“The starting place for your greatness is desire. The desire to succeed, to serve others, to keep on going no matter what…”
– Assegid Habtewold
So, you want to be the best at something, but you don’t know what to do to get there… I’m going to make this extremely simple.
First, you find out how to just get better; you identify what you need to do and break it down into a simple strategy. Then you actually implement what you know you need to do on a consistent basis so that you in fact, get better. Ultimately, you have to become your own teacher to break through the barrier of what currently characterizes ‘the best.’
What does it mean to be the best?
In a way, “the best” is an imaginary concept. Is the best the most talented? The most creative? The most efficient? After a certain point, statistics fail to measure the objective value of ‘the best.’
There’s no real consensus on who is the best at any given thing in life. Even where there are individual competitions, there exists argument as to who is ultimately the best.
‘The best’ represents the idea that there is a huge space between where I am right now and where I could be in relation to something that I do.
Whether its my job, a hobby, or anything else that I do consistently; it refers simultaneously to my lack and my potential.
The Reality Is…
Most of the competition isn’t hard to surpass AT ALL. Even with the mere decision to get better, you’ve passed the 50% mark – most people never get to the point of making a concrete thought about improvement.
With a little bit of learning and a few basic, consistent actions, you can easily jump into the top 5-10% of any craft. The hard part is moving up the ladder when the each rung is crowded with other people as motivated and hungry as you are.
How To Be The Best at Whatever You Do
“A small amount of time invested on your part to share your expertise can open up a new world for someone else.”
– Mark Zuckerberg
Step One: Get Logical
You decide to get logical for just a moment and realize that whatever it is you’re doing and want to get better at, there are others who have had the same desire and motivation. You realize there are others who have actually become the best at the very same things you want to do.
Then you decide to do a little bit of research. Who are these people? What did THEY practice in order to become the best? What makes them stand out from the other more average people who did whatever this thing you want to do, is?
Step Two: Form An Initial Strategy
After you’ve learned what practices work and what efforts need to be made on a daily basis, you bring your logic back to yourself and your experience.
What am I not doing that these other people did? How can I incorporate their practice and efforts into my working on this thing I’m doing?
You decide on a couple of things you can do differently that you can work on, and you commit to doing these things that will help you get better.
Step Three: Consistent Action
Most people can get through the first two steps because its fun, engaging, and we’re usually motivated to start on a path towards change.
Here’s where most people drop off.
You have to actually change the way you’re doing this thing you want to get better at through the practices you committed to. You have to ignore that thought that comes into your head and says ‘fuck it, I’ll work better tomorrow,’ or ‘I’ll practice with this new method tomorrow.’
Consistency is the key to actual growth.
You maintain consistency by finding ways to hold yourself accountable and getting really serious with yourself about WHY you want to get better at this thing – to be the best.
Step Four: Become Your Own Teacher
Once you’ve surpassed the level of average in any given field or practice – regardless of what the thing is, you’ve come to a point where only your own practice and experience can take you to the next level.
“The best” isn’t a static place. Your very saying you want to be the best means that there’s a way to overcome whatever or whoever is currently “the best.”
You don’t become the best by doing what others did to get there.
You can only get there by using others’ knowledge and experience to get a lot better, and then yourself determining what’s necessary to get to the NEXT level. Through your own experience.
An Important Note:
Without patience and the acceptance of inevitable failure along the way, you’ll never have enough of a consistent drive to stay focused on the big picture goal. Remember to be kind to yourself as you endeavor to grow and learn. Be strict with yourself about giving it your all, but realize that the more kind your thoughts about yourself are, the more likely you are to continue on the path of growth.