The taboo and questioning around the statement “Practice makes perfect” has been debated for centuries… Well, maybe not centuries but, at least the last decade or so.
What do you think? Do you believe that endless amounts of practice enables performance perfection?
Different alterations of the statement have been submitted over the years. Those include:
- Perfect practice makes perfect.
- Perfect attention to the right things makes perfect.
- Practicing perfectly makes perfect.
- Your practice makes your perfect.
No matter how you phrase it, the question still remains; does practice make perfect?
A new study from Rice University, Princeton University and Michigan State University finds that practice will most definitely make you better – regardless.
“This question is the subject of a long-running debate in psychology,” said Fred Oswald, professor and chair of psychology at Rice and one of the study’s co-authors. “Why do so few people who are involved in sports such as golf, musical instruments such as the violin or careers such as law or medicine ever reach an expert level of performance?”
This is a good point!.. There are many you study yet, few that master — or — reach a level of experiential achievement.
“Deliberate practice was a strong overall predictor of success in many performance domains, and not surprisingly, people who report practicing a lot generally tend to perform at a higher level than people who practice less,” Oswald said. “However, perhaps the more important contribution of our study is that no matter how strongly practice predicted performance in our findings, there was always statistical room for other personal factors to predict learning a skill and performing successfully, including basic abilities.”
Oswald noted that significant amounts of research have already identified basic abilities as also being important to predicting performance, but some researchers tend to minimize them and consider practice as the sole determinant of performance.
The key here is in the doing day in and day out. Commitment to constant refinement and discipline towards a passion is important to the human psyche and level of fulfillment.
“Other factors matter as well, but even so, no one says that practice will ever hurt you; but be careful if you are walking tightropes,” Oswald said.
At the end of the day, what is perfection anyway? Our ideal of perfection is stale, lifeless and, unnatural. The things in life that make us happy and fulfilled are filled with natural blemishes and slight deviations from what we think of as perfect. This is what makes life spicy and fruitful.
So, does practice make perfect? Maybe..
However, do we want perfection? Maybe not.
Live your passion deliberately!
With deep appreciation,