We tend to pack as much stuff into our days, our software, and our work as we possibly can, but as Seth Godin reminds us, it's good to take a step back now and remember that more isn't always better.
Photo by davidd
It's a cliche, but that doesn't mean it's not worth thinking about. Godin's point is that the cliche applies to our lives just as much as everything else:
Practice is not the answer here. Practice, the 10,000 hours thing, practice alone doesn't produce work that matters. No, that only comes from caring. From caring enough to leap, to bleed for the art, to go out on the ledge, where it's dangerous. When we care enough, we raise the bar, not just for ourselves, but for our customer, our audience and our partners.
It's obvious, then, why I don't play the clarinet any more. I don't care enough, can't work hard enough, don't have the guts to put that work into the world. This is the best reason to stop playing, and it opens the door to go find an art you care enough to make matter instead. Find and make your own music...
We opt for more instead of better.
Better is better than more.
It's a nice reminder that taking a step back and getting rid of tasks is just as productive as getting more done. That means not trying to learn everything in four hours or less, not trying to read every book as quickly as possible, or not enrolling in every free university class that pops up online.
Not even one note [Seth Godin]