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Secrets of Super Learning Pt 2

Jun 28, 2008
As you further develop your skill, one of the best ways to build momentum is to come up with a process to test small changes in your execution. This gives you a way of constantly improving as well as an easy to follow method of generating feedback for yourself.

Smaller steps are always easier to keep track of. Most of us can figure out how to make $1000.00, but most of us can't figure out how to make $1 million. If you can make $1000.00, and you can repeat that 1000 times, then you have made $1 million. The more you can find small elements of a complex skill or skill-set to improve, the faster your improvement will be.

For example, if you were a student of karate, rather than trying to get better at everything at once, narrow it down to a single technique, or even a single aspect of a technique. If you want to work on your sidekick, just begin to pay more attention every time you practice it. Are you performing the sidekick exactly as you would like to? Do you have a clear vision of what you want to be able to do with it? You can even narrow this down to a single aspect of the sidekick. Are you striking with the heel? Are hitting your intended target? Can you throw the kick without the opponent seeing it coming?

As another example, if you are a public speaker, you will want to change as small a detail as possible in order to measure results from the audience. You might add one anecdote into your presentation to gauge the immediate reaction as well as the overall impact on the whole presentation. You might also choose to develop more rapport with audience faster, change the order of the presentation, or change the style of your clothing. Notice that each of these is much easier to work with than creating an entirely new presentation.

Once you begin to recognize all the small details of your skill-set that you can begin to improve, it is also useful to have a time frame for changing them out. A week is a good starting point, but depending on the skill you are developing, you may opt for a slightly shorter or slightly longer period of time.

If you do decide to go with a week, then pick a day to change aspects of the skill. It can be any day of the week, but Sunday often works best. Whatever day you choose, use it to make a final review of all the positive results of the change in your skill. You can also note any challenges in this area that remain, and you can even choose to dedicate another week to it if you feel you haven't improved enough.

For the example of public speaking, you might note that your anecdote really lightened up the dry material in the middle of the presentation and brought the audience back into focus. You might also decide that for the next week you are going to work on pauses and timing to give your major points more impact.

Once you develop a simple feedback mechanism for testing small changes, you will not only build momentum and vastly magnify your ability to improve in any skill, you will also develop an eye for subtle differences. The appreciation and application of subtlety is a true mark of mastery!
About the Author
Benjamin Langley has been studying and training in meditation, yoga, and other sciences of the mind for over 10 years. He regularly writes and shares powerful insights on his own blog. Come take a look: http://peacefulprosperity.com/blog
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