Just Practice

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I’m sure you have heard the above quote from our friend Vince.  I hate this quote!  It’s wrong.  What the heck is perfect practice anyway???  If we could perform perfectly already there would be no need to practice.

I finally picked my word for 2016.  You guessed it.  This year it is “practice”.

Practice by definition can be either a noun:

  • the actual application or use of an idea, belief, or method as opposed to theories about such application or use
  • such as a yoga practice or the practice of teaching

Or a verb:

  • perform (an activity) or exercise (a skill) repeatedly or regularly in order to improve or maintain one’s proficiency
  • such as I practice horse back riding

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I’ve picked practice as my word this year because I believe that the mere act of showing up and doing will lead to growth.  As humans we fumble around and can be pretty innovative we, like most animals, seek the path of least resistance so we will become better at whatever we put our energy into merely because we are practicing.

I read a great quote this week that blew mind.  I apologize for not crediting the individual who said but my google searches have produced a couple different authors so I will credit no one.  Anyway the quote is:

What most people don’t understand is that passion is the result of action, not the cause of it.

YES!!!!  THIS!!!!  To find our passion we must go out and try.  We must do.  We must practice.

Now I will give Mr. Lombardi some credit because what I believe he was trying to say was that if we continually practice things “wrong” that is what will become our habit.  I’m a big believer in our neural pathways opening and solidifying the more we repeat a behavior or thought process.  So when we practice something in way that is not ultimately in alignment with the end result we seek, we are opening the incorrect pathway which will make it harder to open the correct pathway and do things properly in the future because now we have myelinated or built a protective sheath around the neural pathway for  the wrong behavior.

But here is the thing about that, so what?  We might be practicing things in a different way than how we want them to turn out but if we are not trying, how do we figure that out?  If no experimentation is going on how do we know what it is that we want to practice. In my opinion there is no such thing as an imperfect practice, it is all perfect because it leads us to the path that is right for us.  So this year I vow to show up and do, to practice, because even if my practice is not perfect, you are never too old to build new pathways.

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