Bennett’s Five Links #059
quality hours; quality jokes; quality pans; dumb time
The value of hours ..
You have probably heard of the ‘10,000 hours rule’. Someone would have brought it up in conversation. Probably in an attempt to seem very wise.
‘it takes 10,000 hours’, they’d say.
And you’d nod and smile and take another drink.
‘you’ve got to put in the hours…’ you’d reply.
Both of you having satisfied onlookers of your well-read status and fondness for dedication and hard work.
But what gets lost in these cocktail-party-wisdom-nuggets is that the really interesting part of the research wasn’t so much about the 10,000 number - but more about the quality of the hours. About the need for deliberate practice.
That is, while all hours might consist of the same 60 minutes, it’s the way those minutes are spent that determines the value of the hour.
This post suggests a few ways to implement the deliberate practice habit into your everyday life.
The idea that ten thousand hours is a “rule” for expertise has always been somewhat silly. First, the research the rule was based on suggested it was only an average, not a fixed amount. Second, the rule implies just getting a lot of hours is the key. In fact, the research showed pretty much the opposite.
More time with a skill doesn’t lead to mastery. Instead, we reach a comfortable level of ability and get stuck. Improvement is the exception, not the rule.
Doing something every day doesn’t guarantee mastery, it only guarantees adequacy.
The key is to be the kind of person people want to help. Be proactive and humble, willing to soak up advice.
Get Better at the Things You Do Every Day
Daylight savings is dumb ..
Non-Australian subscribers may be surprised to learn that our little island currently has five time zones.
A great example of why we humans are silly.
The gift that keeps re-giving ..
If you’re efficient, you’re doing it the wrong way. The right way is the hard way.
Life’s Work: An Interview with Jerry Seinfeld
Cavemen chronology ..
I loved this image, showing the position of the Sun exactly one month apart throughout the year.
Can you imagine being some particularly observant caveman looking up and noticing the Sun moving in the other direction after the Solstice? It’d be pretty freaky and I bet none of your cavemates would believe you.
You don’t need double-talk ..
Another great addition to my collection of law firm advertising.
Bob Loblaw is still leading the race but I enjoyed this one also.
Sponsored Link — the Ironclad Pan Co
One of the Five Links Subscribers is a very clever, very entrepreneurial bunny that has launched a small business. But unlike the usual ‘side gig to small business’ transition involving capital-light projects such as software development or Substack writing (Hi!!), his business makes and sells cast-iron pans.
A proper old-fashioned manufacturing operation with warehouses and foundries and consumer guarantees and all that stuff. Amazing.
I’m super impressed. And with Christmas coming up I think it would be great if you bought one. Obviously they’re very expensive. But I guess that’s another part of what I like about them. The ‘buy once, cry once’ and ‘less but better’ philosophy really appeals to me at the moment.
Entrepreneur Bunny has kindly offered the discount code ‘bennett15’, which will give you 15% off any of their products site-wide. This newsletter will get a small kick-back that I will put towards advertising to try to get more subscribers.
I’m told there are benefits in cooking with cast-iron, and I believe the pans are all very well made by impressive artisans with edgy facial hair and/or tattoos. But you can learn all that for yourself. My pitch is essentially that the owner is ‘one of us’ and we should support him if we can.
The Ironclad Pan Co - use discount code “bennett15”
If you enjoyed any of these links, the best way you can help me is by forwarding this email on to a friend. They can browse past issues and subscribe at this link.
Hi Bennett! I have some familiarity with Australia, particularly Victoria, but I had no idea how complicated it gets! For 10,000 hours, if I may, I posted my own take a few weeks ago: deliberate practice is crucial: https://howaboutthis.substack.com/p/curious-realizer-10000-hours-to-what