Posted by: changheuk | August 20, 2009


I think something that goes hand in hand with every activity you do is improvement. Without it, you’re not going to see results, and the motivation to keep going on will eventually fade.

First, let’s debunk some myths and briefly examine whether you’re good enough to do uptake a certain activity or not:

– experience isn’t entirely necessary; people who have been doing something for many years might actually become worse as time goes on

– saying that you’re “born with it” is bullshit; of course there are physical limitations, but studies have shown the best musicians weren’t born magically, its their ways of practise and upbringings

– high performance isn’t guaranteed even if you seem to have “talent” for something; after all, without practise, you’ll end up as nothing

– intelligence… nope. Many high achievers to date had moderately average IQ’s, in fact some were a little below. High IQ scores certainly means you’re smarter in some areas, but not all. There’s also the theory of multiple intelligences, which means just that you took some silly test and did well means you’ll be successful in life is… rather absurd


In short, the best way to practise is to redo a common action over and over. If its piano, usually a particular sequence might be repeated many times throughout the song. Practise that first, over and over, make it short and simple. Its sort of like exploiting the 80/20 rule. Knowing that 20% of your practise will be covering 80% of the material is a helpful key in activating the power of progress.

Practise isn’t fun of course; maybe I enjoy playing badminton social games more, but particular drills are likely to be much more beneficial to improvement.

Design your practise routine to suit what you’re doing, just like the piano analogy. I find badminton to be a very footwork/endurance-centered sport, so I think that doing endurance training, and strength training on the legs might actually be more beneficial than just hitting shots back and forth. Reaction is also important of course, but I’m guessing there’s a faster way to improve it…

Time usage is also an issue. Practising something with other people has its constraints, but since everyone has 168 hours a week, you can use the rest of your time to do solo practise by yourself, whether it’d be something like working out, jogging, or playing the piano. The more time you are able to accumulate with the right practise, the better you’ll be in contrast to other peers in the long run. This is statistically proven, where in a school the best group of violinists had accumulated much more hours of practise versus the less stellar group.

Unfortunately, if you only recently uptaken some hobby or activity, the time it takes to polish that skill to the highest level will almost be… let’s say impossible or undoable. However, with the knowledge of deliberate practise in mind, you can get to a high level within a sufficient amount of time.

A brief tie-in: this is how the language acquiring method works, at least from what I’ve learned. You simply drown yourself (fine, immerse if that sounds more peaceful) in the language every living breathing second, and as a result you will find yourself improving tremendously as opposed to those who attend class and otherwise don’t give a crap. As to what I’ve mentioned earlier, languages, in a parallel fashion, aren’t acquired just because someone grew up there. It simply means they drowned in their mother language for the first few years. You can do the same thing with the right discipline and mindset, and though it is overwhelming, it is ultimately a finite process.

< This post is not yet completed, I will cover more later once I receive more input on this topic soon >



  1. high IQ means you can learn and apply knowledge at a much faster rate than those of lower IQ, nothing else

    a low IQ person might have to spend 1000 hour learning something
    a high IQ person might spend 300 hours to learn the same thing

    notice how both require spending time acquiring knowledge? without hard work, nothing is achieved

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