The 365 Commitment

Time is Required

By Greg -, CC BY 2.0,
Even Brittany required time under pressure.

There is no secret to success that you are missing out on. The primary and many times the only “secret to success” is time. Time under pressure. The more time you commit the more you figure out how to be efficient. The human machine is the epitome of nature/God’s creation. You are in command and control of an organic intelligent machine. You will figure out the best path, the best way, after committing enough time to the task.
We even help each other. This human machine reaches out and learns and grows from the group. We post, we link, we write, we inform, we document. I learned how to replace a window regulator on a Jeep yesterday by watching a man do the process on YouTube. Humans are not alone and are purpose built to help each other. We have all the necessary communication capabilities to do so. The one thing that we must be willing to do, is to commit the time. In some cases, generations of time.
The TikTok Viral Generation has fallen for the allure of instant stardom. This has always been the case, this happens with every rising generation. This is much worse now because our ability to communicate with other humans has never been like this. Pervasive. Ubiquitous. Instant fame is possible, but we confuse fame with success. Cultures that have survived for thousands of years have learned this lesson well. I am not an authority on this, but I get the sense that a maharaja sitar player is not considered great until at least 50. You can be good at 20 or 30, but a master of the field? Not until you have grown a beard young man or a long braid of gray hair young lady.
I am old enough to remember the rise of Brittany Spears. There were many before her, but she was the first “instant star” that I can remember. What is interesting about her career, is that her rise to fame was anything but instant. We all remember “Baby One More Time,” in 1999. This album was popular, hitting the top of selling charts immediately upon release. To those of us that were older, we rolled our eyes and flipped the channel back to the oldies but goodies. The rest of the world listened and changed.
This creates the impression that Mrs. Spears rise to success was instant. As if she got discovered in a mall one day singing and thrown into a recording studio. She was in a mall, btw. She was in hundreds of them. Brilliant concept. Take your music to where your target audience is. Go an a “mall tour.” I am thinking it was the brutal work of touring every mall in the country that got her record to the top. Yet, it was not the tour itself, it was her legendary performance.
She was a sight to behold. No one had every brought that kind of energy, enthusiasm, and flair to a mall in some midwestern town. If you were a 12 year old girl, you got to see a real show right there in the plaza. Right there next to the Charotte Russe, Wet Seal, or Sam Goody. Ask this question. Why was Brittany so good? Why was she so well rehearsed, practiced, every song learned by heart? She was 17. She had well rehearsed dance routines, choreography, costumes and perfect timing. Why? Time.
This “instant” stardom was the culmination of hours of hard work. She started in earnest at 3 years old. By the time she was performing in front of her first audience of mall rats, she had already had a solid 14 years in. Kindergarten performances, gymnastic classes, training camps at an early age. Mickey Mouse club at age 8. She was a full time working performing artist by the time she was 12. Here is my back of the napkin calculation. By the time she was on national television with Disney, she had at least 10,000 hours as a performer. She was already an “expert,” in our minds. From age 12 to 17, she was more than full time. This was her entire existence. At least 15,000 hours in that 5 years or more. So when she release that first album in 1999 she had well over 20,000 hours of time committed to being a performer.
Her success was not instant. Neither will yours. The secret ingredient to any successful journey is time. Mozart, Fischer, any childhood prodigy is a myth. They all had a significant amount of time under pressure. There is no avoiding this concept. You can learn how to be great at something, but that learning is meaningless until you actually do it, a lot. Over and over again. Great runners spend a lot of time on their feet. Great musicians spend a lot of time on their instrument of choice. Great performers, perform. Great artists, create. There is no way around this concept.
You can add as much anxiety and stress as you want to this equation. You can fret and worry about how “bad” you are at something. You can read, learn, and buy as many self improvement books as Amazon can sell. The reality is still going to be there. To be good at anything, requires time. The concept is to do it. Get on the path and start. Anything else is secondary. Time is both your adversary and friend. You want to be the best, then commit the time. Do not commit the time and you will stare at defeat, no matter how good you are at “faking it.”
Time. Start now and accumulate as many hours as you can under pressure.

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