At one point in our lives, we desire to get better at our skills. But we often don’t know where to begin, or we lose the motivation to do so, thinking that it would take too much effort and time. We also get discouraged by our past negative experiences.

How Long Does it Take to Get Better at Something?

You probably have heard of the 10,000-hour principle by Malcolm Gladwell, which suggests that you need to practice 10,000 hours to master any skill deliberately. But the practice is just one of the many factors that will help you get better at something. It all starts with your desire, values, and purpose.

7 Steps to Get Better at Any Skill

1 Identify your core values

Identifying your core values basically means knowing yourself better. Be honest with yourself and write down the values that are important to you. It would be helpful to remember life experiences that made a significant impact on you.

2 Create a purpose statement

Take a look at a list of your values. These are the values that you genuinely care about. Pick your top three. Your top 3 core values reveal your personality, interests, and needs. Write about what you can do for yourself and others using your top core values. An example is, “I am hardworking (value) and resilient (value). I will inspire people to find the right career for them.”

3 Specify the thing that you want to become better at

With your purpose statement as a guide, specify the things that you want to become better at. It should be consistent with your values. Going back to the sample purpose stated above, a possible skill that you may want to improve on is communication or leadership skills. You can inspire people when you can communicate effectively in front of an audience.

4 Set an objective

A goal is a general statement on what you want to achieve, and an objective is a specific and measurable target. For example, I will start reading two books about leadership per month to broaden my knowledge within three months. Identify your objectives and set them to improve your skills.

5 Create a mastery strategy

This is the “how” part of the process and where practice comes in. List down the steps you need to take to get better at a skill. Maybe you need to take classes, devote hours during the week, or the day to practice, or you can consider joining support groups or clubs.

6 Take massive action

After you’ve learned theories and concepts, now is the time to take the leap. Test your skills in real-life settings. Ask mentors or even people in your social circle to give you feedback. Feedback will tell you where you need to focus and what you need to adjust in your mastery strategy.


Getting better at something takes more than just practice. It starts with knowing what’s important to you.

  • Identify your core values.
  • Create a purpose statement.
  • Specify the skill you want to become better at.
  • Check if it aligns with your values and purpose.
  • Set an objective
  • Create a mastery strategy
  • Take massive action.