The Motivation for Greatness

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A couple of days ago I attended the Canadian Undergraduate Technology Conference (2-3 May),  it was a very inspiring and intimate conference held at the MaRS discovery centre in Toronto. There was a huge range of incredible speakers from all over the tech industry that came to indulge us in their experiences and their knowledge of the business. Being an undergraduate student still unsure of what exactly I want to do, I found this opportunity to be an extremely eye-opening experience.

From talking to speakers about a variety of topics like: their journey and tips to balance life and work (@Dinah_Davis), beginning a business and the life of an entrepreneur (@DesmonChoi), to finding your passion (@AndrewDSouza). It was surely a life lesson and technology packed weekend.

There was one talk that I found extremely interesting as it touched up on a topic that isn’t commonly talked about “The Imposter Syndrome” (@JeffShin). I read up more about it and it essentially is a psychological phenomenon where we don’t find ourselves worthy of our own accomplishments and an astounding 70% of us experience it! (Read more about it here: Caltech). Later on in the talk Jeff talks about his designing experience and how he experienced the imposter syndrome. How he was immobilized by it and how to overcome it. The imposter syndrome is psychological so you just need to put in work so that you can increase your competence and then eventually your confidence will follow.

“Your taste is still killer which is why your work disappoints you. You have to know this is normal and if you put in work you will close that gap” – @JeffShin

The Confidence vs Competence Graph

Immediately after seeing this graph, my mind clicked. I have personally experienced “The Imposter Syndrome” multiple times and just didn’t understand what I was experiencing. Jeff also mentions that at the point of “desert of despair” many of us just quit and never get to experience the beauty of mastering a skill. I thought for awhile and I suppose deep down we all know this graph, we all know that we need to continue to finally master a skill so why do we give up, why don’t we put in the work to close the gap and how do we find motivation? He simply answered:

“Motivation can be found through time management and organization.” – @JeffShin

And when you think about it he’s right. If we schedule a little bit of time everyday and work on it, it will become habit and once it becomes habit it will then improve and once you master a skill nobody can take it from you.

This may have been old news to you or this could have been extremely enlightening for you. Regardless of who you are or how skilled you are I’m sure there is something that you’d like to accomplish or skill you’d like to master. So I’d like to challenge you what Jeff challenged me: Take on the #100DayChallenge and work on something you love everyday.

“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then, is not an act, but a habit.” – Aristotle

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