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352 pages, Hardcover
First published May 28, 2019
“Scientists examined the life path of the athletes. Eventual Elite athletes typically devote less time early on to deliberate practice in the activity, which they will eventually become experts. Instead, they undergo what the researchers call a sampling period. They play a variety of sports and gain a range of physical proficiencies. They learn about their own abilities. Only later did they focus on and ramp up practice in one area. Late specialization is the key to success in these cases."
"Whether or not experience inevitably led to expertise, they agreed, depended entirely on the domain in question. Narrow experience made better chess and poker players and firefighters, but not for better predictors of financial or political trends, or of how employees or patients would perform"
"Randomized clinical trials shows that stents for patients with stable chest pain prevent zero heart attacks and extend the lives of patients by a grand total of not at all. The cardiovascular system isn't a kitchen sink that turns out treating out one blocked pipe doesn't help. When an entire specialty grows up around devotion to a particular tool, the result can be disastrous myopia. ”
"Knowing when to quit is such a big strategical advantage that every single person before undertaking an endeavor should enumerate conditions under which they should quit. The important trick is staying attuned to whether switching is a failure in perseverance or astute recognition that better matches are available."
“Learning stuff was less important than learning about oneself. Exploration is not just a whimsical luxury of education; it is a central benefit.”
“Overspecialization can lead to collective tragedy even when every individual separately takes the most reasonable course of action.”
"Compare yourself to yourself yesterday, not to younger people who aren't you. Everyone progresses at a different rate, so don't let anyone else make you feel behind. You probably don't even know where exactly you're going, so feeling behind doesn't help."