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Posts tagged golf

Andy:

Shelves and shelves of self-help books are stocked in America with the canon of the quick fix. The 10,000-hour concept, though, is based on academic research into the idea that success is a choice — made, not born. At first glance, it feels like a very American idea — you can be anything you want to be — but it is an unsentimental view of the world. It helps to be tall in basketball, and it helps to start violin lessons at a young age, but what separates the few truly great from the many merely good is not talent or magic or luck. It’s dedication and discipline.

The secret to success isn’t a secret. It’s work.

Dan played competitive tennis as a boy, and was good at it, and then quit. He ran one year of cross country in high school, and was good at it, and then quit. He wanted to run on his own. He followed his brother to Boston University for a year and was a physics and math major, and then quit. Instead, he traveled, alone. He graduated from the University of Georgia with a degree in photojournalism and was a photographer for a newspaper in Chattanooga, Tenn., for a year, and then quit.

He has started five novels.

He took one piano lesson. . . .

Steve McLaughlin also didn’t think his son would take this as far as he has. Neither did his mother. Neither did his brother or his sister or his girlfriend.

“Dan’s always been an ideas guy,” his brother, Matthew McLaughlin, said. “The fact that he would think of such a thing isn’t surprising. But ideas are one thing. Execution is another. He would get frustrated and quit.”

At this point, though, more than 1,000 hours and nearly a year into the plan, they’re more than surprised. They’re impressed.