how to become an expert (translated from luojisiwei)

1 you get what you sow

Diligence is the path to the mountain of knowledge, hardworking is the boat in the endless sea of learning. When we were young, the sign of “study hard and make progress everyday” is posted at the rear of classroom. This slogan was used to inspire the students to study hard and to become a pro.  All talk without action cannot help you become an expert.

There is a best seller book called “outliers the story of success”. In that book, it introduced so called “ten thousand hours theory”. After all, you need to spend time and stick it to a level of self abused,in order to be successful.

2 deliberate practice

Diligence is not wrong, but the blind diligence is. Study hard and practice diligently may not necessarily get what you want, what you really need is deliberate practice. The success in any sport is not due to the athlete’s personal physical condition, but largely because a better training method is used.  With the advanced training method and deliberate practice, the good result can be expected to come.

Deliberate practice is not blind practice which is practising only the basic. Blind practice will lead you nowhere. The Essence of human civilisation, all knowledge system has its own structure. The ancestor’s experience can be sealed into concepts and the descendants can use it conveniently without second thought. i.e. the knowledge that the ancestor discovered could be abstracted into a concept, we can always take and use it easily. By succeeding the ancestor’s experience and method, keep on practise, improve the method, and deliberately practise is how the civilisation makes progress.

Scheme 1 the experience of the senior

Some expertises cannot be learned from the book. The only way to know them is to consult the sophisticated senior. The senior’s experience is the most valuable.

When Mr Luo was a TV journalist conducting interview, sometimes the interviewee is stammered and so nervous that he can not say a word ,even if he is given a big poster in front of him to read.  The senior of Mr Luo told him a trick, in case the interviewee cannot express himself clearly, you can summarise for him if you understand his meaning. For example, Mr Wang do you mean this? After you summarising the main points for him, more than likely, he would agree and say yes yes yes.  It is the time for him to repeat. Then he should be able to speak out fluently and no longer be nervous.

When Mr luo was working as a reporter, his senior taught him a lot of experience and manoeuvre. e.g. How to invite, how to pre-interview, how to edit after interview,  how to deal with a lot of issues. Due to the length of working experience of the senior, he must have accumulated a lot of  experience and manoeuvres to solve the problems. By studying those manoeuvres, we can deal with the  critical situations in a better way when it appears. Therefore it would reduce the trial and error cost and increase the economic benefit significantly.

Scheme 2 concept and disassembling

The human’s civilisation is built on concept. for example, in physics, the most important discovery is entropy in 20 century. Just like in economics,the transaction cost is the most important discovery recently. Transaction cost has very comprehensive meaning and content. Entropy, if you understand its connotation and denotation,you can understand the whole knowledge system evolved from it. Therefore, one should learn how to use these concept in the process of accumulating knowledge and know them precisely. It is called to learn the scheme.

The true practice is not a blind practice which is not smart. The true practice is to break down the big the knowledge block into small modules, make them as small knowledge can as possible,and  practise them individually. It is so called disassembling. For example, in the music field, to become a guitar player, you need to return to the basic trivial and monopoly fingering exercises. To become a pianist, you need to always return to the basic fingering exercises, e.g. Hanong fingering exercises. to become a violinist,  a melody need to be broken into very tiny parts, and practise the small part individually. Another example, in rugby  practice, only 1% time is spent in real match. At ordinary times, the training is concentrated on speed and particular formation. With regard to particular player, the different muscle  are trained separately.

The disassembling technique could be used in all industries. The majority of lawyers’ training time is spent in reading a lot of case decision. The go player’s basic training is not to contest with another player on internet but to remember modules and a lot of manuals. The great master’s way of success is to learn the formula of expert, just like breaking the building into bricks and acquire understanding from the bricks. It is the most effective way to train the particular precisely. Obviously, the only formula itself would not be much useful,  the key is to repeat again and again.  The targeted and repetitive practice is the essence of deliberate practice.

Leave the comfortable zone and keep on doing something you cannot

A lot of people love playing chess. However they are always lingering at the level of beginner. It is because they care comfortable feeling more than getting the result from deliberate training. So as in the game, if your purpose is only to feel great, you are not actually playing the game. You are played by the game. The essence of studying is to walk out the comfortable zone.

The successful in the game achieving something always tries the tasks he cannot do. Let us take map in computer game for example, the successful person will endeavoured to find out all the details in the map. Some figures in the game are confidential, however the successful players are willing to do a lot of research and test in order to find them out. Those people can become experts through the deliberate exercise.

There is a famous golf player in America called Tiger Woods, the famous Mr Tiger.  He lives in a indiscreet personal live, however he is god in the golf ground. It is said that lots of professional players admire his ability to stop in the middle of swinging if something unexpected happened on the ground, e.g. if someone shouting or roaming around makes him believe he cannot perform well, he can just stop half way. He is able to adjust himself and restart again.

It is a piece of cake for amateur like me, I think I can stop halfway and redo it too. However it is a big deal for a professional player. Because the professional swinging is driven by muscle memory. It is a subconscious action. It may look dexterous, but it is out of control of the brain. The brain is actually no longer in charge of it. If something happened on the ground, it was certain that you would not perform well as a matter of fact. However Tiger woods are different, he will not let himself into the comfortable zone and he always challenge himself with difficult situation in daily training. He will not allow any of his body movement uncontrolled.

Keep on challenge uncomfortable zone, keep on doing something unlearned, learn scheme and deliberate training and keep on training in the right way repetitively. You will become an expert.









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