Learning a new skill isn’t easy no matter what, but the hardest part sometimes is pushing yourself through those first moments when you’re failing a lot. Author Josh Kaufman recommends deciding on a number of hours to pre-commit to a skill before you start to help you over the hump.
In an interview with BoingBoing, author of The First 20 Hours: How to Learn Anything…Fast! Josh Kaufman shares the reason why he thinks the time commitment matters:
Rapid skill acquisition, as a process, is quite simple: Decide what you want, then break complex skills down into smaller sub-skills. Do a bit of research to identify the sub-skills you’ll use most often, then practice those first. Remove unnecessary barriers to practice by changing your environment to make it easy to avoid distractions. Pre-commit to completing at least 20 hours of practice to push through early frustrations and avoid giving up before you see results…
The 20-hour precommitment, in my experience, is key. The first few hours of practice are always frustrating. Deciding to invest a certain amount of time before you begin makes it much easier to persist long enough to see improvement.
Twenty hours isn’t some magic bullet number. The idea here is that you set aside the amount of hours you’re going to commit to learning a skill, and then you actually meet that goal. Doing so for around 20 hours helps you get over that hump where you’re terrible and into the realms where you’re actually capable of making something. Head over to BoingBoing for the full interview.
Picture: Rob and Stephanie Levy/Flickr