It Takes Effort to Be Effortless (Lesson From Learning to Dance)

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I’ve lately been learning how to dance for my wedding.

Dance is NOT my forte whatsoever. I don’t dance – don’t know anything about it – and didn’t care about it whatsoever in my entire life.

I’ve spent the last decade obsessing over business and I watch no movies and barely listen to any music.

In other words, I’m as n00b as they come in the world of dancing.

Stiff, ungraceful, and choppy in my movements (although I’m getting better really fast).

In the meantime, the fiance/soon-to-be-wife is pretty adept at it and both the dance teachers I hired are insanely good at it.

When they dance, it looks beautiful. Their movements are graceful, fluid, and effortless.

It takes a lot of effort to get good enough to be effortless.

When I started writing, I’d have to spend an entire day working on an article.

Now I can whip up better articles in just an hour or two.

And they read and flow better than stuff I spent an entire day working on back when I got into writing.


I acquired the skill with time.

After hundreds of blog posts, tens of thousands of tweets, and countless emails – I have acquired and gotten very good at writing.

Now I can write “effortlessly” without a lot of editing needed (other than the typos but hey – even the best programmers have bugs in their code).

It took me years to get to this point.

Mastery takes YEARS.

Although I am nowhere near a “master writer” like Hemingway (LMM is just a hobby and all the advice here is my life experience, not fictional stories) – it still took me YEARS to get as good as I am.

I asked my dance teacher how long he’s been dancing and he said 20 years.

It takes time.

Now he can dance on literally any song and look great. Effortlessly.

But to get to the point where he can dance to any song effortlessly, he put in 20 years of effort.

To be able to write a good article in 2 hours, it took me years of writing.

Does Talent Matter?

Of course it does. There are some people who will probably dance better than my instructor in just 5 years of training.

There are people who will write better than me in just a handful of months.

Some people have raw inborn talent.

But so what?

If it takes you 5 years, it takes 5 years.

If it takes 10, then it takes 10.

If you care about it, you just got to do it regardless.

Of course, you should make a career out of your talents (since you will be much better than your competition, you will make a lot of money).

But if you need to do something you’re untalented at and it takes time – so what? Let it take time.

A fat kid comes up to me and says “how long will it take for me to look like you?”. Who knows frankly?

It’ll take as long as it takes. Some people have better genetics and get fit faster, others get there slower.

If you want to get there, you’ll eventually get there.

Do not compare your day 10 to someone else’s day 10000.

At the end of the day, your only competition is you.

Are you better than you were yesterday?

My dance skills are much better than they were a week ago (although far worse than my instructor who’s been dancing for 20 years).

If I keep doing it, I’ll keep getting better.

All of these guys who are really good at something put in effort to be really good at it.

You see these kids who solve Rubik’s cubes really fast?

They practice that shit constantly. They really care about it (that’s why so many Rubik’s cube champions are kids – only kids care enough about this to practice it).

They practice so much that they look like they can solve it effortlessly.

While me as a beginner struggles to remember the Rubik’s cube algorithm.

These guys don’t have magic hands.

They’ve just practiced the shit out of solving Rubik’s cubes that now when they do it, it looks like they did it without thinking.

You can learn anything.

10 years ago I used to speak broken English. Today millions of people have read what I write.

I can’t dance well at all but I’m rapidly getting better.

YOU can learn anything if you put your mind to it and don’t compare yourself to other skilled people.

Flying planes, shooting guns, performing heart surgery – yes you are capable of learning anything.

It may take months and years but if you keep doing it you will become very good at it.

So good that you will look effortless at it. People will wonder how you did it.

But, there’s no escaping effort. You will have to do the reps if you want the results.

It takes a ton of effort to get to the point where you can do something effortlessly.

If you can put in the effort, you can do anything.

That’s all for today.

Until next time.

Your man,

Harsh Strongman

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