04 October 2013

Practice makes us better but make sure it does not become permanent

Don't know where it comes from:

"Practice doesn’t make perfect. Practice makes permanent."

If your golf swing is wrong, more practice will ensure you continue to swing wrongly.

So, some wise guy, Vince Lombardi, American Football Player 1913-1970, says:
"Practice does not make perfect. Only perfect practice makes perfect".

Hence, before you practice, make sure you get the right practice first, else you will be wasting your time and energy.

However, how and when do you know you have the 'perfect' practice before you can start? There is this danger of analysis paralysis resulting in never starting to do any thing at all except for dong another study or research to be sure.

Furthermore, we seldom grasp the true meaning of any teaching until we do it. You can teach the theory of swimming or riding a bicycle, but until I do it, I don't really appreciate them. There is therefore the concept of learning as you do which results in the initial statement of "practice makes perfect". May be we can qualify it to make it clearer, "Practice makes you proficient in the practice" and to make the story complete, to add, "and there is always a better practice". Coaching helps me to my errors in practice so that I can correct them.

If you bring in the Eastern mindset where the people and the situation should be a consideration, then you would want to add, "which right practice is best for me in the particular situation (golf, swimming in pool or sea). What is the right practice for a man may not be the right one for the woman. It could also be age dependent etc.

Then there is the seemingly smart Alex who says, "If practice makes perfect, and no one's perfect, why practice?". So the goal for practice is not about perfection but about improvement ... to be better.

What am I trying to achieve?

1. Be critical and go for deeper depth in our understanding. Beware of the seemingly great quotes from people.

2. Have a wider framework to guide our thinking and decision making.
See Thinking Frameworks

"Practice makes me better, and there are always better practices for me to be better."

So we practice to be better and at the same time always looking for new ways to be better.
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