Escape stagnation in 10 minutes

Why am I not growing anymore?!

I reckon we’ve all been there before. Maybe you are in this situation right now. To be fair, everyone reaches this point and has to deal with the same issue. You are in the process of learning something and you feel like you’ve been stuck at the same level for age. In other words you’ve hit the plateau. You don’t feel like you are progressing well. You are frustrated because you’ve suddenly stopped growing. Your stagnation makes it much harder for you to actually get up and work towards your dreams every single day. Don’t worry, I’ve successfully gone through many similar situations.

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“What great performers have achieved is the ability to avoid doing it automatically.”

Geoff Colvin

I have stopped making progress… why?

The progreess curve is very steep at the beginning of each learning process. We make great strides straight to the brightest future and march towards excellence with no doubts in our minds. At least that is how it feels. However, after some time our progress slows down, stops and what is more, very often our curve of progress falls into negative levels. Why is that? And what to do to overcome this state? Let’s look at it together…

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Knowing about the learning curve is essential

This is the classical learning curve of adopting any skill. If you were afraid that you are not growing as much, you are stagnating or even degrading, looking at this graph should calm you down. As you can see above, when learning anything new you must stay persistent at all times! Especially in the third phase. That’s when the biggest crises hits you. Now that you’re aware that if you feel like your progress has stopped you might be actually getting closer to your goals, you need to stop where you are, think and figure out a way to get back on the track! Dedicate your time, energy and willpower to get yourself to the top again. Support it with your passion and don’t ever doubt your abilities again.

Understanding this curve helps you cultivate your patience and understand what it really takes to become better. Use it!

What to focus on?

The key to bringing yourself significantly more success in the future is to focus your mind not on your following year, not on the upcoming weeks, neither on the next few days days, but only on the present. You can not achieve great success without making the necessary small steps towards it. Do not ever try to be revolutionary by risking 100% on something you have not fully understood. That is not bravery, that’s madness. You need to work on the details. You need to be able to fully concentrate on the small particles of your great and fulfilling path. That is the way every single genius is made. Your goals need to be focused on working on every minor thing, which has to be executed in a perfect way. You are able to work hard, but giving it everything  is manageable for a very short time. At least in the beginning. After a while, you will become used to the hard work and struggle it takes to get what you want. You will become comfortable giving it your all. That is called progress.

What does it take to be a master?

Stay present. I do not want to repeat myself, but it’s very important. Be fully concentrated on the moment! If you want to follow this path of reaching your final destination, this is the way to go. Have you ever wondered why does the beautiful word present also have its second meaning as the synonym term to a word gift? Coincidence? Not at all. At least, I believe so. To be present means to be gifted. You are in possession of that magical thing. Use your present time wisely. You never know how much time you have.

Stop looking around, stop looking in the past or trying to predict the future. Be present. You’ll see a big difference. Have you ever seen any of the horse races? Try to recall the horses having their blinkers on their heads forcing them to focus on what is actually important – the very next step! Imagine that you’ve got one and focus only on the activity you are engaged in right now. Employ the so called “Tunnel Vision”.

“If you focus yourself 100% on your minutes, the hours will take care of them.”

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Now you know about  the magic of the so-called deliberate practice!

So that’s it? Is that the thing? Is it that simple? You probably all know that old saying which proclaims that in simplicity there is beauty. It is very true. Deliberate practice is a term denoting the whole process of mastering your skill through the method of consciously concentrating on the smallest details when acquiring a new skill. The method I mentioned above. The term comes from the great American writer Geoff Colvin and is used as the main topic in his best selling book called Talent Is Overrated. I definitely recommend reading it. It will teach you a lot about your big potential to grow in any area. It will also teach you plenty of useful things about the most successful people (like Tiger Woods or W.A. Mozart) using the method of deliberate practice. I just cannot stress enough how great the message of the book is.

“You can not always be doing what you love, but you can always love what you do!”

This is the very last point worth mentioning in this informative article. When you’re going to train anything with the deliberate practice method, you’ll need to stay very patient. You will have to find a lot of willpower, at least at the beginning of your progress. I’m sure you know that even though you might be doing something you really love, constant repetition does get quiet tiring after some time. You might fight it for a long time owing to the fun you’re having. Nevertheless, you’ll get tired. And that’s completely natural. However, life is also about managing to do stuff that you don’t love. Sometimes you even hate it. And these things are the most important in terms of your progress. What exactly? Your attitude towards anything you really don’t enjoy doing. Sometimes you don’t have a choice. If you cannot do what you love, try to love what you do instead. You will feel the difference almost immediately after persuading yourself that you’re absolutely fine doing that!

The lecture of the day…

If you want to master any skill you need to take advantage of your present state. You’ve been gifted with the opportunity to live at the moment, use it wisely. Evenly important is to use it effectively as well. Because the time we can work at our maximum is very limited. And if you want to grow effectively, you need to maximize that time. You need to focus on the small details, small habits. They should be done almost perfectly. Through repeating that process you’ll begin to make an impact. You will be growing more than ever. Concentrate on your present self – doing that, the future is taken care of.

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  1. Very good advice here, particularly the part about being in the present moment! It is so conducive to our progress.

    Thanks for sharing the good content my friend.

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