There are a lot of people of all stripes that I’ve seen do this. They settle for “good enough”. Maybe it is being willing to read things that aren’t really what they want to, but its available. Maybe it is writing a story, doing a bit of an edit, and saying “that’s enough”.
Either one of these – you’re doing yourself a disservice. I’m guilty of it too from time to time. I’ll find something easy and fall into those patterns. It happens. But that’s not how you reach success no matter what you’re doing.
It is always the effort to push and try to do better. The 10,000 hours assertion (that’s how much time it takes to master something) doesn’t happen without you actively working at it and trying to hone what you’re doing. It is through pushing at the borders and edges of our capabilities that we learn to improve.
I came around to a late resolution this year – I’m going to try to start avoiding mediocrity in what I’m taking in. There’s a ton of articles out there that are middle of the road, and that’s fine. But the issue is the time I’m spending on things that aren’t helping me as much as they should.
It is based upon an underlying assumption that I’m fine admitting to – the assumption is that what I’m taking in is going to affect what I’m able to output. The better things I taken in, the better I should be, in theory, able to output. There’s a little bit of science behind this, but not a crazy amount. Nothing definitive.
Following this, I’m not going to finish reading or watching things that I don’t think are amazing. I don’t have the time right now. The result is definitely going to be that I miss things, but that’s the way of things.
In other news – I’ve got a new feature going up on the blog every Wednesday; Stories from History. The first one is about Tycho Brahe’s elk and you can check it out in the archive. New one coming up on this Wednesday and every one coming up.