Hours To Mastery”
Baeth Davis, The Hand Analyst, Inc.
That’s my beloved daughter by marriage,
Hannah Richter, learning some new chords
on her dad’s Martin D-28 acoustic guitar.
Mark figures he’s put in about 5,000
hours on the guitar since he started playing
in his teens. Hannah just started last
year. If she plays 10 hours a week, 52 weeks
a year for the next 10 years, she’ll
accrue 5200 hours of practice by the age of
And if she ups it to 30 hours a week, she
can do it in 3.33 years. But if she plays
30 hours a week, 52 weeks a year for 6.5 years,
she can pass the 10,000 hour mark!
Yes, nearly a full time job… and
the path to MASTERY.
Malcolm Gladwell, in his new book,
Outliers, shares his discoveries
about what really contributes to exceptional
individual accomplishment in one’s profession.
(I read this book at Michael McLean’s
suggestion. More about Michael in a minute.)
Gladwell’s research discovered
a remarkable thing – most folks reached
a MASTERY level of expertise after approximately
10,000 hours of practice.
H. Jackson Brown said, "Don't say
you don't have enough time. You have exactly
the same number of hours per day that were
given to Helen Keller, Pasteur, Michelangelo,
Mother Teresa, Leonardo da Vinci, Thomas Jefferson,
and Albert Einstein."
Michelangelo said, “If people
knew how hard I worked to get my mastery,
it wouldn't seem so wonderful at all.”
Michael McLean, friend, mastermind buddy
and winner of the “Marketer of the
Year” at the 2009 SuperConference,
won because of ONE thing: his mastery.
He marketed his insurance business consistently,
fervently and over a longer period of time
than the contest competition.
While at the conference, each contestant
was given a new task to determine the final
winner. This is where Michael’s
exceptional mastery came into play. Michael
used to own and coach a hockey team in Canada.
Before that, he played hockey competitively
for many thousands of hours. He took the
mastery he acquired playing and coaching hockey
and applied it to his insurance business.
At the competition, Michael rounded up
a bunch of his insurance associates. He
and his five supporters locked themselves
up in a hotel suite for 48 hours, without
sleep, and did research, set up new web sites,
got video testimonials and more… in
As for the other two contestants, one
was convinced he was the winner (but didn’t
use his actual business expertise in the competition…
ooops) and the other was having a good time
and either didn’t play to win or just
Michael relied on HIS MASTERY to win the
Michael reads marketing books, takes marketing
seminars and implements marketing ideas like
no one I’ve ever met. He’s
original, uplifting and humorous. His lovely
partner, Krista Hearty, a healer and
teacher who you’ll be hearing more from
in the coming months and years, and their
Golden Retriever, Avery, are frequent guests
in his marketing. He also offers free pizza
to new clients and his competition doesn’t.
In fact, his competition is so envious of
Michael’s marketing prowess, they actually
advertise, “No Free Pizza,” which
drives even more business to Michael’s
company! Michael puts in the time and wins.
Consistently. Joyfully. I dare say, masterfully!
While enjoying Angus Young wail on
his guitar at the recent AC/DC concert
in Ottawa, Michael leaned over to Mark and
I and said, “I bet he’s put
in his 10,000 hours, eh?”
I’ve noticed a trend over the past 15
years or so in all sectors of public life
of looking for “man’s easy way
to riches.” Show me a successful
person and I will show you 10,000 hours plus
at their profession before they hit mastery.
After doing some rough calculations, I
figure I’ve logged 7,000 hours reading
hands, 6,000 hours coaching folks, 5200 hours
writing and over 8,000 hours reading (primarily
non-fiction books at 15 hours a week) over
the last 11 years of being in business for
myself. There are also untold hours of
researching, attending conferences, being
coached and implementing, organizing and marketing
in my business. Also, I do not watch television
except the occasional weekend movie. If you
are watching more than one hour of TV per
day, you are losing massive time that could
be dedicated toward your desired mastery.
We may live in a quantum universe but that
doesn’t mean instant manifestation.
What it means is that when you commit to something
with passion, you release other opportunities,
increasing your success in the reality you
have chosen and are essentially creating.
Beethoven and Mozart may have died young
– but they’d logged their 10,000
hours as musicians before they died.
There is a direct connection between money
and time. The more time you put in toward
your mastery, the higher the fees you can
command. Why? Because you are an expert
and your clients know the difference! You
can accrue your expertise quickly or slowly,
but accrue it you must! There are other
ways to manifest money, of course, but if
you’re playing the business game, you
need to have expertise to contribute to others.
If this discourages you, congratulations!
I have laid out for countless clients the
amount of time, capital and energy their particular
business goals will require and I often hear,
“But Baeth, that’s discouraging.
Can’t it be easier?”
Ease is a matter of perspective. If
by ‘ease’ you mean with little
effort and little time, you may as well get
a job – or keep buying lotto tickets.
But if by ‘ease’ you mean with
joy, enthusiasm, persistence, and dedication,
then YES, the keys to the kingdom are yours!
I love what I do, so it’s ‘easy.’
Does it take up most of my time? You bet!
Besides, what would I be doing instead? I’d
be searching for a purpose (like 98% of the
human population!) that I wish would consume
me with passion so I could commit to it, absorb
it and master it. Once you master ONE
THING, you gain access to ALL THINGS (including
money, luxury and fame if you so desire it).
Why would you do something if not for the
passion of it? If you’re going to
log 10,000 hours at anything, I would
suggest you don’t just ‘like it,’
I suggest you love it. Have you noticed
that Tiger Woods, Bill Gates, Oprah, Angus
Young, Tom Cruise all seem to enjoy what
they are doing?
They can’t help but put in their
time. It’s their LIFE PURPOSE! Are
you MASTERING YOURS?
#1 In the past
10 years, what is one thing you’ve spent
10,000 hours mastering? Is it being a
parent? Surfing in Hawaii? Writing? Reading?
Coaching? Dancing? Traveling? Studying? Everyone
has done at least one thing for this amount
of time. Calculate it and write it down.
Marcia Bench, my recommended expert this
week, shares the story of two women who
loved to watch soap operas. In fact, they
watched thousands of hours of soap operas.
They decided, “How can we get paid
to watch soap operas?” They decided
to do weekly compilations of the soap opera
highlights and before long, their work was
featured in publications all over the country.
#2 Now that
you’ve identified your 10,000 hours,
how can you combine this with your Life Purpose
for a winning combination?
For example, let’s say you’ve
spent 20,000 hours running a family business.
You now want to start your own business
and express your Life Purpose as the
“Big Shot Mentor and Healer in the Spotlight.”
Imagine the resources you could provide to
people either wanting to start, sell, dissolve
or heal their family business. And that’s
just one combination. You could offer tele-classes,
workshops and private consultations for folks
wanting to create their dream business. Perhaps
you want to coach folks creating businesses
that allow them more time with their children
or allow the children to participate in the
business. Let your mind go wild.
I shared earlier how I love to read
hands, coach, write and read books so
my business is primarily structured around
those activities. Those activities also
allow me to express my Life Purpose as the
“successful spiritual business owner
with an inspirational message for a large
My process goes something like this:
I read someone’s hands, reveal their
Life Purpose, coach with them to make that
purpose a reality, write about my discoveries
and read, read, read out of insatiable curiosity
to learn more about the world around me. I
then integrate all of that information and
bring it to audiences around the world via
live speaking events, television, radio, print
and the internet. The sharing of the message:
“Your Life Purpose is in YOUR Hands
(literally!)” is the summation of the
countless hours of doing activities that I
love to do.
YOUR Life Purpose is expressed fully
when your mastery merges with your passion.
© 2009 The Hand Analyst, Inc.
Baeth Davis is "The Hand Analyst."
Get her FREE SPECIAL REPORT, "The 5 Massive Mistakes Spiritually-Oriented Women Make in Business (… and how to avoid them!)" and her FREE hot tips to discover your specific career niche at www.handanalyst.com. Baeth won the 2007-2008 Glazer-Kennedy Information Marketer of the Year Award. She'll show you how your HANDS reveal the best way to build a business that is both purpose-full and profitable!