One thing I know about the process of mastering an art or activity is that you have to have a certain amount of faith. What I mean by this is that new insights don’t happen in a predictable pattern, but in occasional moments of grace when some aspect of your practice or your mindset helps you find out something new. As long as you have faith that you will often learn new things as a result of “doing your thing,” you don’t have to force yourself to get better. If you’ve chosen to master an activity that you are really passionate about, your work itself will be, at worst, a little bit rewarding – especially when done with the right people – so having faith just means doing it whenever possible and being open to new insights when they happen.
The cool thing is, doesn’t that sound a lot like play? When kids love something, they just dive in and start doing it. And they learn like crazy! I watch my kid playing with the other kids on the playground and they all just jump in into any new activity with both feet. They’re in it completely, and they’re having fun. When they stop having fun, they switch to something else. But sometimes they come away from a new activity with a completely new ability, even though they were simply focused on doing it, and having a great time.
Most of us adults think we have to work with a purpose in mind, but maybe we just have to remember what it was like to play. Have faith that new insights will occur, and immerse yourself fully in your chosen life’s mission.