“So, how do you become an expert at doing something? The answer, of course, is “practice,” but there are two complications.
The first is that you can’t really practice until you can do your activity, at least at some minimal level. That’s one place where all the other activities besides practice come in: taking a class, reading a book, watching someone else do it. (There are also activities that are too dangerous to just jump in and start practicing on your own — clearing unexploded munitions, for example.)
The second is that there’s useful practice (deliberate practice) and then there’s all the other things you might do that are easier than deliberate practice, but that don’t help you develop expertise.
Deliberate practice is just this:
1. performing your skill (or, more typically, a piece of it)
2. monitoring your performance
3. evaluating your success
4. figuring out how to do it better
and then repeating that sequence again and again.
That’s it. That’s how to become an expert. Most experts have done just that, for hours a day, for years.”
Interesting to read and take note of.
“Most of the information here is based on K. Anders Ericsson’s paper The Role of Deliberate Practice in the Acquisition of Expert Performance. That paper has data for violin players, piano players, chess players, gymnasts, runners, tennis players, and swimmers. The domain doesn’t seem to matter — deliberate practice is the key developing expert performance.”