426: Scott H. Young | 12 Maxims For Mastery in “Get Better at Anything”

Returning guest Scott H. Young is a Wall Street Journal bestselling author, podcast host, computer programmer and an avid reader. In this episode, Scott discusses his new book, “Get Better at Anything: 12 Maxims for Mastery”, which focuses on the process of learning and getting better at various skills. He shares the story of Tetris as an example of how the environment can enable or inhibit learning and progress. Young also explores the connection between creativity and learning, emphasizing the importance of understanding and copying successful examples.

He challenges the notion that failure is the best teacher and highlights the significance of building a foundation of success. Young advises starting with what you’re most interested in learning and gradually expanding your interests as you gain confidence and skills. He discusses the balance between consumption and creation in learning and the importance of both. Young also touches on the difficulty of predicting learning outcomes and the need for focused and constrained learning projects.

In this conversation, Scott H. Young discusses the importance of breaking down big goals into smaller, more manageable tasks. He emphasizes that big projects are just a collection of smaller goals stacked together. Young also explores the concept of quantity leading to great things, highlighting that the more work you produce, the more likely you are to have successful outcomes.

He references the work of psychologist Dean Simonton, who found that once individuals reach a certain level of proficiency, their trajectory of success becomes relatively flat. Young also delves into the role of fear in learning and how exposure can help reduce fear responses over time. He concludes by discussing the connection between imagination and learning, emphasizing the importance of mental models in acquiring knowledge.

You can find Get Better at Anything on Amazon here.