For sportsmen, people of any discipline, there must exist a certain enjoyment or love for the activity or game which they play. Passion and motivation are two of the most important and related factors of any competitor.
I personally cannot say that I am a good example in the latter. During the start of my typing, I was motivated to practice daily, for at least an hour if not several. Now, however, my intensity has reduced since, mostly because results diminish naturally. While I still practice for quite a while, the sense of wonderment and constant improvement with more practice that was once held has been sapped; it wanes and waxes based on results.
To remain excellent, therefore, I find it necessary to practice constantly. To not fall into the routine of content is vital if one wishes to improve and not become a milestone for up-and-coming typists to surpass; it is a humbling moment when someone of lower experience surpasses someone of much greater, something which, if one seeks excellence, should never happen. Constant improvement is the very reason why we improve ourselves, so that we cement our places.
There are different kinds of practice, however, and for different purposes. As I mentioned earlier, there is practice simply for the sake of cementing skill, which might just be a brush on speed typing daily or every other day. There is practice, then, for slight improvement, enough to keep one’s head above the water and not be a plateau, and finally the real, respectable practice for surpassing- daily, constant, and motivated practice.
For each, of course, one must have a different mindset. Because the first two are not what this journal focuses on, I will focus on the last.
I have watched dozens of different videos, read several books and talked to a multitude of excellent coaches in sports about improvement. The simplest factor, the condensation of the information, is that we must train not for success but for improvement. This is, of course, not a simple task. I myself am a particularly poor example- my temper is very short and lack of results causes great frustration. However, recently there was a realization in my mind, namely that no matter what I thought in my mind, the way to improve is completely in the mind.
Take for example just typing. Anyone *can* type at theoretically incredible speeds, and it is not, for typists past an elementary level, the speed of fingers which determines words produced, but rather the speed at which the mind can convert visual words or mental thoughts into physical actions for the hands to carry out. As more practice comes, of course, we become more familiar with the layout and it becomes second nature, although the time of this practice required can vary greatly. As we can see from everyday people, it is not the amount of time spent typing which necessarily makes a good typist, but it is the amount of deliberate practice motivated towards speed.
Simple using myself as a study to compare with a typing-intensive professional, let us compare the times. I would say that I deliberately practice typing for an average of 1.5 hours daily, while they would type overall for at least four hours of an eight-hour workday, and let’s assume that they’re 40 years old, working for 15 years. In a normal 230-workday year, that would account for 920 hours a year, over 15 years equivalent to 13800 hours, well over the oft-cited ‘10,000 hours’ theory. Calculating my time of an average 1.5 hours daily for a year and three months, that would make up about 450 days, or 675 hours. Even with these conservative elements, this is a 20x difference (over an order of magnitude) in amount of time spent, but most professionals again type less than 100 wpm (as can be evidenced by keyboard forums and the like, it tends from 70-90), while my speed has now averaged at 150 wpm. The disparity is completely explainable, however.
It’s quite simple. I practice every time to be faster, while they are more likely focusing on their job. Even with a dozen times longer spent, anyone can achieve incredible speeds simply by focusing and practicing, focusing on how to improve. An hour a day is a good number for fast improvement, and although more or less can be spent, it’s an average and achievable amount, especially if one focuses.
P.S. Finally broke the 160 barrier, achieving 160 a few times and a 161 result. I do apologize for the late post; some comments would be excellent especially having to do with what you would like me to discuss or even have a conversation. Until next time.