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The First Step to Mastery

When was the last time you were a beginner at something? Let me be specific, there’s a difference between a beginner and a non-practitioner.

The English language doesn’t have a word for a person who does not do something. Actually, in most cases, we tend to call those people “beginners.” This, in my opinion, is inaccurate.

The difference between a non-practitioner (or NP) and a beginner is like the difference between zero and one. Let’s use the example of “cooking an omelette” to illustrate this difference:

Tim and Dave are twins. Neither of the two have ever made omelettes. One morning, Dave gets tired of waiting for mom to make him breakfast and decides to have a go at it himself. Tim is also tired of waiting for salty omelettes, but instead opts for a bowl of Captain Crunch.

Dave’s first omelette is terrible. It’s bland and full of eggshells. The next day he makes another omelette, which ends up a little less crunchy than before.

Let’s pause the story here. The cliche is to trace Dave’s progress all the way until he masters the omelette. If this were a movie, there would probably be a compilation of Dave working hard to perfect his cooking. However, that isn’t the point.

The point is that Dave is actually making omelettes. Even if he never becomes an expert at cooking omelettes, he’s still miles ahead of everyone who just “doesn’t make omelettes.”

To become a master in any field, skill, or craft, you have to first become a beginner. To become a beginner, you have to actually start.

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2 thoughts on “The First Step to Mastery

  1. DAVID J PANZARELLA says:

    This article is well thought out, articulate and accurate! I would like to post this to LinkedIn as well as this article has deep meaning to any professional that reads it. Can you add that feature or do I need to just cut and paste the link?

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    • Thank you Dave. As usual, I’m struck by your generosity. I will be sure to add that feature right away. For now, feel free to cut and paste the link wherever you want!

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