Two approaches to incompetence

One. We learn something new. We achieve conscious incompetence. We dislike the feeling of inadequacy. We find ways to resolve the issue as quickly as possible.

When time is of the essence, shortcuts become the obvious choice. To get better at golf I buy more expensive equipment. (We do this with any sport really.) To get better at my job I watch Tedtalks or read some books. The results are tangible and immediate.

The incompetence pressure releases and all is well with the world.

Two. We embrace the incompetence we discover. We learn the basics. We practice it over and over until we get it right unconsciously. We start to put it together. We build on a foundation of healthy basics.

It takes much longer to do the flashy stuff. We don’t receive the gratification of perceived exponential progress. It’s the long road. Until one day, when the quick fixes hit a ceiling. The highest levels of performance are beyond their grasp. In order to improve, they have to backtrack and fix the cracks in the foundation. The basics fail them.

Your improvement is limitless.

Both tactics are useful. The question is, why are you doing it?

The most appropriate option is defined by the goal, not the convenience.

Markus Spiske

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