Four Keys to Good Practice

Practice is an important factor in mastering any skill. You want the hours you spend to be as efficient as possible so you can improve steadily. Here are four keys to making your practice effective.

Learning a new skill, such as playing an instrument or programming, is not easy. Here’s how to set yourself up for success in your quest to get better.

  • Minimize Distractions : It’s no surprise that your phone and computer can be very distracting if you leave them at arm’s length during exercise. Place them where you cannot see or hear any notifications so that you are not tempted to stop exercising, respond to the message “very quickly” and end up down the rabbit hole that distracts you.
  • Focus on quality : Start slowly if you’re new to the practice so you can make sure you’re doing quality work, such as doing one dance move well, before moving on to the rest of the routine. Once you’re comfortable, increase your speed, but don’t lose sight of the quality of your practice.
  • Divide your practice into classes : take breaks between workouts. Even professional athletes and entertainers need time between workouts to recharge so they can maintain the required quality level during training.
  • Use your imagination : Run a dance, speech, or piece of music in your imagination when you are not physically engaged. It can really help you improve as many skills have a heavy mental component.

Even if you really love something, there are moments during practice that are frustrating. Remember the tips above to stay on the path to improvement.

How To Practice Effectively | TED-Ed (YouTube)

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