When you want to learn something – painting, video game design, tennis, cosplay, whatever – the advice you hear is always the same:
Master the foundations first. The fancy techniques will come later.
When you reach an intermediate level – where you can hold your own and start developing your own style – the advice is almost the same again.
Go back and make sure your foundations are solid.
Sure, there’ll be some specific techniques you can pick up at this stage… but don’t even think about those until you know the basics.
When you master something and you’re creating the new state of the art, you begin to do the impossible. You make the shots that others miss, you express the concept no one else even knows and you see the truth of your field a little clearer.
Which means you’ll sometimes make mistakes. It’s part of the process – and it’s an honour to bleed on the cutting edge.
When blood spills, the first question many masters ask themselves is, “did I violate a fundamental principle here?”
Maybe they did, maybe they didn’t, but it’s always a useful thing to check.
Masters violate the seemingly ironclad rules of the field all the time. They see a new way of operating that goes beyond (and often against) what beginners learn.
But, as they say, you have to learn the rules before you can break them.
The moral to this rambling bunch of words?
The idea of mastery can motivate you, sure… but until you ingrain the basics, you can’t get there yet.
So far, I haven’t said much that’s new. This advice has been around for decades, centuries, eons.
So let me offer up this thought:
What are the basics of life?
What are the foundations of success, in the broadest sense of the word?
If you want to do something amazing with your time – whether that’s to establish a business empire or be a great parent – what foundations of life do you need before you even touch the foundations of your field?
A five-year old can’t be a champion boxer yet, and a dog will never be a world-class poet. There must be some foundations – something deep – upon which the foundations of everything else rise.
Before you even learn how to jab, you need to learn how to learn, how to move.
How to think.
How to use your body – not as a tool, but an extension of your will.
It’s funny. Folk will teach you everything except how to use your mind, even though really thinking is the prerequisite to everything they teach you.
That’s because few folk know how to engage the mind on this level. It’s not a question of intelligence – we’re all smart enough to think. And it’s definitely not a question of experience, because when are we ever not thinking?
It’s a question of having the right tools.
Tools like hypnosis, which lets you access a part of your mind that’s normally invisible to you. It’s like staring at your computer’s desktop, then suddenly knowing how to use the command line.
Everything changes then.
So if you’re looking to learn something new or master your current skills, everyone would tell you to focus on the foundations of the field.
I say, focus on the foundations of your life.
A great way to start is with the Neural Reset. It cleanses your thinking, allowing you to learn new ways of focusing – learning a whole new way of learning: