There are people in this world who are exceptional. People who seem to have god given talent. Bruce Lee, in my opinion, is in the same category as Jimi Hendrix. His ability was mindblowing! They both had that kind of talent.
How does someone reach this level of skill? Is it something you’re born with?
Studies show that expertise comes from a lot of practice. Not just sitting and playing, but conscious, focussed practice! I’ve been there, sitting with my guitar, and I zone out… When I come back to consciousness, I know I’ve been playing but I wasn’t there for it… That kind of practice doesn’t count! According to the studies, you need to put in at the very least, 3 hours a day for 10 years… Seems like a lot, but in interviews, virtuosos tell that they have done this very thing – usually more.
People like Bruce Lee and Jimi Hendrix, as well as a host of others like Michael Jordan, Andres Segovia, John Coltrane, Vaslov Nijinsky (and hundreds of others I could name right now) go beyond our understanding of expertise. Theoretically, anyone who puts in focussed and deliberate practice or study, can become an expert. To achieve the levels that masters like Bruce Lee and Jimi Hendrix have, you need to live your passion. For these people I argue that their art was not just something they did, but something inside the depth of their souls. It wasn’t just there while they were practicing or performing, it was there in everything they ever did. It wasn’t something they chose, but something that chose them.