“Too much consistency inevitably leads to a plateau where weaknesses ossify and improvement becomes harder.” – Scott Young

True growth comes from deliberate practice which requires disrupting your routine, pushing yourself to new limits, and getting outside your comfort zone. Habits, on the other hand, are built on repetition. They are automatic actions that don’t require much conscious thought. So how does one balance this dynamic?

Young shares a few ways he is getting past this dilemma:

  1. Purposefully taking on projects to learn new skills.
  2. Setting “deep-focus” hours to consciously push your skill-set forward.
  3. Instead of changing your habits, changing your environment in order to force habit change and learning.

Read his entire post here.

  • http://twitter.com/emerigent/lists/memberships Emeri Gent [Em]

    If I am an orderly person habits are my best friend, and there are times
    when I have put my life in complete order and magical things have
    happened, for the simple reason that habit got my brain in order as
    well. In other words my innovative plumbing got fixed.

    On the
    other hand when I become a mess of contradictions, I become more like
    Marshall McLuhan, in a sea of daft or peculiar ideas, I can scrape
    something really good. McLuhan intellectually liked messes i.e. he
    allowed mistakes to happen, because he was curious and probing through
    his journey.

    John Lennon on other hand was a mess of
    contradictions because that is who he was. One can look at Lennon’s
    photographs at various life stages and his very persona changes, shows
    difference.

    There was a nasty side to John Lennon – the Stu
    Sutcliffe fight is an example of that, be we remember him for PEACE.
    This is an example of one of those messy contradictions – inside as a
    human being there is a huge soup of complexity at work, yet with Yoko he
    took one idea like PEACE and tried to make a habit out of it. It is
    the habit we most remember him for – the one that cemented his
    greatness.

    I think the sign of a very creative individual is the
    contradictions that are the DNA of that soul. Yet I see innovation as
    the habit portion of creativity – the creativity we can utilize conforms
    more towards our discipline rather than our disruptions.

    We
    remember John Lennon for the songs that arose from his discipline, yet
    we know that John Lennon’s creativity arose from his disruptions. The
    key that I find most interesting is the question featured in the movie
    Jerry McGuire i.e.

    “What if I’m just not built that way?”

    There
    are more people who are unlike Lennon than like Lennon, so the
    prescription to be something different – i.e. to be disruptive reminds
    me of the accountant in who inquires about a career change to be a
    lion-tamer

    Maybe
    the ideal job for non-creatives is chartered accountancy but if one is
    creative, then there isn’t a paradox but simply the “AND” – habit AND
    disruption. Trusting that is really being who you really are –
    otherwise we won’t know what we are taming and when there is benefit in
    the taming.

    A great habit is arriving at a conclusion. Sorry, but, in regards to this, I still don’t have one . . .

    [Em]

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