Adopting Pro mindset
Steven Pressfield is a profilic writer. I loved two of his books, ‘war of art’ and ‘do the work’.
He writes in a poetic manner which makes it less practical. This post is an attempt towards synthesizing my understanding of
what is a pro.
Simply put, a professional is the one with
The war for a professional is not with external circumstances but internal which he names as
The Professional is someone who
- Is Patient
- Seeks order
- Acts in the face of fear
- Accepts no excuses
- Plays it as it lays
- Is prepared
- Does not show off
- Dedicates himself to mastering technique
- Does not hesitate to ask for help
- Does not take failure or success personally
- Does not identify with his or her instrument/work
- Endures adversity
- Reinvents herself
- Is recognized by other professionals
Amateur vs Professional Habits
“The amateur tweets. The pro works.”
I have created a cheat-sheet based on the books.
I won’t be able to
I fear this ____
I don’t have _____
I lack ____
Easily changes his mind.
Examples I can and I will.
I can learn _____
I can study _____
Gets stuck in perfection.
I have to release it all perfect.
|Has a |
“One rule for first full working drafts: get them done ASAP.
Understands that this draft is not being graded.
Only one thing matters in this initial draft: get SOMETHING done, however flawed or imperfect.
|Attitude||Childish care-free thinking||Grown up/Adult thinking.|
|Relation with reality||Lives in denial and acts by addiction||Lives in reality.|
|Thinking Style Long-term or short-term||Gives up to immediate gratification(short-term) instead of long-term growth, health, or integrity.||Faces and win against resistance in any act that |
|Planning||Planning style||Does not even know what he wants.|
Does not try to plan any long term goal.
|Knows that any |
Then, he just have to fill in the gaps; then fill in the gaps between the gaps.
|Research Style||Does research without a deadline.|
Then, Research becomes a Resistance.
He keeps preparing to work but never works”
Does research early or late but
Doesn’t stop working.
Understands that “Research can be fun.
It can be seductive.
That’s its danger.
We need it, we love it.
But we must never forget that
|Progress||Progress||Thinks that progress is linear.||understand that |
Sometimes, the middle part done and sometime the beginning.
Keeps working daily.
|Action Style||Thinks too much and acts on nothing.|
Understands that he can always revise and revisit once has has acted but he can accomplish nothing until he act.
|Work Ethics||Inspiration Style||Mindset: keeps waiting for the inspiration to strike.|
Waits for inspiration to strike and then work.
Work on the same routine day in day out irrespective of the motivation, pain or any other excuse.
|Working Hours Mindset.||Mindset: Play before work Daily Life is about *Drama *Denial of reality.|
*Distraction * Pleasurable activities * Hobbies * Days are full of activities that does not even matter in the long run.
* Procrastinates often,
|Mindset : Work before play|
Sticks to his goals/resolution no matter what happens.
Sets up a strict work hours.
Orders the day such that he can confront the fear that paralyzes him.
Has strict rules and follows them to restrict the play during work hours.
* does not procrastinate important tasks as he understands that the most important tasks are non-negotiable.
Escapes the real challenges.
“The warrior and the artist live by the same code of necessity, which dictates that the
|Dealing style with his calling (main career)||Afraid of true calling, pursue a shadow calling instead.|
Then drifts from his main purpose.
Fears that if he turns pro and lives out his calling, he will have to live up to who he really is and what he is truly capable of.
|Embraces true calling.|
Seeks his own voice, his own truth, his own authenticity.
|Temptation resistance||Gives up to temptations.|
Does not try to fight them.
|Each day, he understands that he will wake up facing the same demons, the same Resistance, the same self-sabotage, the same tendencies to shadow activities and amateurism that he has always faced.|
The difference is that now he will
He will have
|Presence of mind||The amateur spends his time worrying the past and imagining what the future will be.||The professional has taught himself to banish these distractions.|
He knows that future will be same or worst if he keeps on doing the same activities.
He focuses on the 20% work which will provide 80% results in future.
|Self||Self-worth||Allows his worth and identity to be defined by others.|
Thinks what others think about him.
|Defines his own worth according to his own standards.|
|Fears||A lot of fears|
2. silence Because he needs to avoid, at all costs, the voice inside her head that would point her toward her calling and her destiny.
So she seeks distraction.
|Embraces all fears on the journey like a true warrior.|
|Compassion||lacks any Compassion for himself.|
|Understands that |
Does not reflect at all on his past day, week, year, decade.
Ask himself weekly questions to keep himself on the track.
Does weekly, monthly, quarterly, annual reviews to keep himself on the path.
Looks to others to provide himself his goals.
Knows where he wants to work and why.
Knows who he wants to be in the next 5 years.
|Self-Doubt||constantly re-evaluates if his decision/goal is right or wrong.|
|Works on commitment.|
Thinks once and then understands that its a non-negotiable decision, a decision to which he must
|Self-Trust||Always looks out for others to guide him.|
Distrusts his own inner voice.
|Listens to his own voice often.|
|Enemy||Thinks that his enemies are:|
lack of preparation;
Difficulty of the project
the state of the marketplace
the emptiness of our bank account.
|understands that the |
|Habits||Bed Time||Not fixed.|
Wake up like a child freely.
|Has a fixed a |
|Activities||Does the same activities each week which does not provide any results.||Changes the activities he engages in according to the goal.|
|Health||Eat whatever he craves whether its junk, chocolate, or burgers.|
Does not care about his body.
|Eats to optimize his body to maximum performance.|
Changes the shape of his body to maintain optimal health needed.
|Dealing with others||Friends||keeps up with old friends even if they restrict him from evolving further.|
Does not take a step to get new friend related to his main goal.
|Does not give a shit to any friend who is holding him back.|
Understand that “Turning PRO” changes who is drawn to him and who is repelled by him.
Understands that Turning pro changes how people perceive him.
chooses carefully how he spends his time and with whom he spends it.
|Choice of Friends||Sticks with people who in the past had been colleagues and associates, even friends with whom he is has no common goal in present.|
|Understands that he has to choose between the life he want for his future and the life he has in the past.|
Understands that he won’t be able to spend time with people from the past - colleagues and associates, even friends.
His intention to grow and to evolve.
Understands that new friends will appear just like old one.
|Judgment of Society/Relatives/Friends/Others.||Fears becoming who he really is because he fears that this new person(new identity) will be judged by others as ‘different||Believes that the tribe doesn’t give a shit so he is not afraid from the judgment of others.|
Believes that there is no tribe, just individuals like him.
Takes the material of his personal pain and uses it to draw attention to himself.
Creates a ‘life’, a ‘character’, a ‘personality’.
|Kinda Essentialist Everything is simple in his life.|
No fancy cars.
No fancy things at all.
Also, he talks about the nature of practice.
Characteristics of a Practice
- A practice has a space
- A practice has a time
- A practice has an intention
- We come to a practice as warriors
- We come to a practice in humility
- We come to a practice as students
- A practice is lifelong
Remember on days when Resistance is really strong:
- Take what you can get and stay patient. The defense may crack late in the game.
- Play for tomorrow.
- We’re in this for the long haul.