From the Desk Remix! – The Repeating Hour.

On October 31st the clocks here in the UK went backwards.

Once it hit 2am, it returned to 1am.

Deju Vu or a chance to redo that hour.

Unfortunately, not many of us were probably up thinking of all the possibilities of having an hour which lasted for two.

Deju Vu is an interesting concept. The feeling that we have been somewhere, done or said something before.

Ironically, most of our life is a kind of Deja Vu.

We generally tend to wake at the same time each morning. We follow a similar routine. We journey to work in an identical route.

Each day is an endless number of things we repeat to a close enough pattern to make it ‘familiar’.

Like that repeated hour between 1 and 2am, we essentially spend it the same way.

I’ve read a number of books/articles recently which touch on the ‘10,000 Hour Rule’.

Popularised by Malcolm Gladwell, he did a good job of emphasising that if someone is better than you at something, it is probably the outcome of spending more time doing that ‘thing’ more than you.

Gladwell used research carried out by Anders Ericsson as the basis for his assertion.

Ericsson, himself, points out that the number – 10,000 hours – isn’t necessarily correct. Sometimes it is more and sometimes less. And it isn’t just repeating an action over and over which creates the mastery.

Ericsson points towards ‘deliberate practice’. You don’t repeat an action. You add variation.

You push the limits of what you are doing. You practice to failure. You aim to push yourself past the point where you are successful.

Deja Vu or redo?

Everytime you repeat an action try and do something different with it.

On your commute, pay attention to how many people smile at you, or count how many light blue cars you notice.

Improve your observation skills.

If you are brushing your teeth, you have about 2 minutes to try and think of all of the songs you can remember with a number in the title.

Mastermind only gives you two minutes in your chosen specialised subject.

When you are writing or painting, or composing, vary what you are doing. It could be time blocking when normally you don’t, standing instead of sitting, free play rather than scales.

It isn’t just when the clocks go back that you have the chance to approach an hour differently.

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