There is nothing superhuman to excellence.
It is ‘simply’ a bunch of small skills or activities, grouped into habits, which are done consistently.
Excellence, then, is in habits & consistency. The minute details are important. Each aspect of some technique becomes critical. Each small action for that technique is grouped into a habit for doing that technique.
Performing this perfectly every time means that you perform at the highest levels, given that the small actions you make are the best possible actions for that technique.
In other words: excellence is mundane.
Excellent performance comes from
- doing ordinary actions,
- doing them consistently, and
- doing them as well as you can.
When this is habitualized, and compounded over time, it adds up to great results.
Warren Buffett is a great example. He’s known for having a pretty boring investing-style, but is widely known for being great at it1.
I highly recommend the paper that inspired this note.