Iteration And Pushing

We learn how to be world class in sports, music, drama and art the same way.  There’s some initial talent and interest.  Then we iterate on the same movement, speech and scripts relentlessly until we rise above the noise of mediocrity.

My kids get frustrated early when they can’t do something well.  I ask them, “Have you tried it 200 times?”  It realigns their expectations quickly for themselves.  They are learning the process of failing forward and iterating.  We have applied the same approach to piano, soccer, writing, and making money.  They are learning the secret to success.  Iteration is necessary and not as scary as we may build up in our minds.  It is pure work and desire which helps us to find the path towards perfection.


Richard St. John’s TEDTalk, 8 Secrets of Success, highlights one of the key aspects of success.  The art and inclusion of pushing.  We need to push ourselves or someone needs to push us.  Kids need to be pushed to achieve more than they naturally would avert.  Pushing takes perseverance and hard work.

Ultimately, iteration happens in the context of pushing.  We learn, refine and do better each step of the way until we get past mediocrity.

Iteration and pushing are strategies anyone can use.  This is especially true of today’s new economy.  We can build, tear things down, start over and present again quickly.  Reinvention is not as overwhelming as in previous eras.  The digital age has moved the focus from atoms to bits, thus alleviating the pain and cost of iterating.

Here’s the gist: winning requires a commitment to iterating.

What’s stopping you from the success you desire?

Published by Don Dalrymple

I partner with founders and entrepreneurs in startup businesses. I write and consult on strategy, systems, team building and growing revenue.

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