Practice Productively

There’s a straightforward method for improving at anything you want — a simple approach that most people don’t really know about. It’s the technique that high performers in a range of fields, from sports to the sciences, have learned.

It’s all about the way you practice, whatever it is you want to master.

Just because you are actively doing something, you are not necessarily actually achieving anything. You know what I mean: You read a few pages of a novel or a report you are supposed to be absorbing and then look up and realize that you haven’t really remembered any of it. Your eyes were actively scanning the pages, but your mind was on vacation somewhere — you weren’t paying attention.

Here’s what the drive to improve steadily and consistently involves:

Practice does not make perfect.

Practice makes permanent.

Productive practice makes perfect.

If you really want to improve your writing or research or anything, you have to practice productively. In the field of high performance, this is called deliberate practice.

When you practice deliberately, you practice with intention and attention.

Intention means that you are practicing with a definite purpose in mind—a goal that will give meaning and energy to all your efforts.

Attention involves keeping your mind on what you’re doing while you’re doing it — actively learning and staying focused.

So, whether you want to improve your plotting or your dialogue or your mastery of word play, make it a point to practice productively—with attention and intention—and you’ll start seeing results. Write on!

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About karinwritesdangerously

I am a writer and this is a motivational blog designed to help both writers and aspiring writers to push to the next level. Key themes are peak performance, passion, overcoming writing roadblocks, juicing up your creativity, and the joys of writing.
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