Continued from previous posting.
The high performers not only work with high concentration and take intermittent break, they also do the hard thing first. No procratination.
The author cites the 1993 study done by Anders Ericsson. The study involves 30 violinists around the age of 8. They were divided into three groups based on ratings from their professors. The study required them to keep a diary of all their activities. All of them agreed that “practice alone” had the biggest impact on improving their performance.
Here’s the interesting part: nearly all of them agreed that practice was the most difficult activity in their lives and least enjoyable. But what made the top two groups different from the bottom one was the top ones “practiced an average of 3.5 hours a day, typically did so in three separate sessions of no more than 90 minutes each, mostly in the mornings, when they were presumably most rested and least distracted. They took renewal breaks between each session.”
The bottom group practiced an average of 1.4 hours a day, with no fixed schedule, but often in the afternoon, which suggested that they were procrastinating and avoid doing the “least enjoyable.”
It seems low performers not only work less but also are likely to be procrastinators.