This week, we’re talking about mastering new skills.

Have you ever heard that it takes 10-thousand hours of doing something to truly master it?

Well, it’s a good theory, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s true.

Recently, I read an article by Brendon Burchard, one of the world’s leading high performance coaches.

He suggests that by following what’s called “the principles of progressive mastery,” you can get there in way less than 10-thousand hours.

First - set a very specific goal. You want to learn how to plan an instrument? Which one? Then, set specific stretch goals. Ones that aren’t too easy to check off, but aren’t completely out of the question.

Attach high levels of emotion and meaning to those goals — why is it so important to master this new skill?

Identify the specific things that will be critical to your success… Learning to read music, carving out an hour a day to practice. Whatever it is.

Then, visualize your success. What will it look like when you’re successful? Maybe you’ll be on stage playing for people you care about, or maybe, you’ll be able to play your favorite song.

If you’re competitive, and that drives you, figure out a way to compete with other people on developing this skill, and then continue to set higher and higher goals.

Finally - measure your success. Sure, you won’t be able to play Hendrix on that guitar in the first week, but take stock of where you are… It’s the only way to know how far you’ve come.

And this is a great one — start to teach others. The better you can explain it to somebody else, the better you’ll be at it yourself.