Here’s what I know: if someone’s much better than you at something, they probably try much harder. You probably underestimate how much harder they try. I’m not saying that talent isn’t a meaningful differentiator, because it certainly is, but I think people generally underestimate how effort needs to be poured into talent in order to develop it. So much of getting good at anything is just pure labor: figuring out how to try and then offering up the hours.
If somebody is great at something, they’ve offered up the hours to be that way. If we want to get and stay good at anything, we’ve got to offer up the hours too. Whether it’s something we’re inherently talented at or something we’re driven to get better at – offer up the hours.
And, the effort continues beyond practice and preparation. Effort goes into the performance, the shipping of the work, and the delivery of the results too. Offer up the hours.
Think of any professional you admire and think about how they pour their effort on in public. You’ve got to do the work in the arena where the game is played. Even when it’s hard. Even when it sucks. Even when they’re cheering our name, even they’re booing. Offer up the hours.
Pour the effort in. In practice and during performances. Do the work and don’t stop. Offer up the hours. That’s it.
h/t Shane Parrish for sharing Ava’s post in one of his recent newsletters
ps. I mean, you’re thinking Iverson by now too, right?! Preach: