Most Progress Is Made in the Middle of the Learning Curve
Going from 0% to 80% takes significantly less time than going from 80% to 99%, even though the gap is larger. Focusing on the 20% that leads to the 80% also means that less effort is required to make progress in getting to 80%, especially after breaking through the learning barrier. Once you start approaching diminishing returns, more time and effort is required to make less progress than in the middle of the learning curve.
However, by the time you reach the point of diminishing returns, you are usually above average. This means that becoming above average is more easily attainable than being in the top percentile, and is often more than enough for many things. You can achieve "just good enough" to above average results in a short amount of time and be close to the same level with people that have done it for longer. Deliberate practice matters more than the total time of experience.
It is usually unnecessary to get to the top percentile, which requires significantly more effort, where you will need to dedicate your life to that one thing and may not result in large tangible differences that are worth the investment of time and effort for what you get in return.
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