Perfect as the wing of a bird may be, it will never enable the bird to fly if unsupported by the air. Facts are the air of science. Without them a man of science can never rise.

—Ivan Pavlov

Just because we don’t understand something doesn’t not mean there is not a scientific reason for it. Therefore, it should not be dismissed as “just how things are” and there is nothing we can do or learn about it. High performers are obsessed with the science of their craft. They seek incremental gains through incessantly studying the latest research, experimenting and testing their approaches. They seek advantage through precision.

Three Key Areas

Cold and Unforgiving

There are laws of gravity, physics and performance. They are non-negotiable and not up for debate. Astronauts, pilots and athletes know that “winging it” has no place in their world. When the stakes are high there are no do-overs.

Personal preferences are irrelevant

All of us have preferred ways we would like to practice our craft, and without competitors, we could do so. However, at the top tiers of performance, there sometimes is just a best way to do things that must be refined, optimized and continuously improved.

Accept what works and work on it

High performers use science to their advantage. In conjunction with how they prepare and how they are coached, they are students of their craft and never, ever stop trying to accumulate every last marginal gain out of their efforts.

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“Excellence is never an accident. It is always the result of high intention, sincere effort, and intelligent execution; it represents the wise choice of many alternatives – choice, not chance, determines your destiny.”

— Aristotle


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