Blow Up Your Ability Balloon

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It's pretty clear to most of us that skills unpractised are eventually lost. Anything at the limits of our abilities need to be exercised regularly to avoid having them waste away.

Think of activities, skills, as points in space, and your skills envelope as surrounding them. The skills envelope is something like a balloon, always trying to contract, and only ever being held out by things close to its inner boundary. Without constant attention to those outlying (skills), eventually the balloon will contract inwards past them, and they will then be outside your ability.

Of course, practising them can once again stretch out the ability balloon, so maybe practising skills beyond your ability horizon pushes it back out again. Perhaps there's a better visualisation than that of a balloon. Maybe you can help me find one. If you do then please - let us know - we'd be delighted to hear from you.

The real bonus is that as your ability balloon stretches, so the things in the middle are further from the boundary. They become easier, and probably more enjoyable.

Working on things you can't do properly
makes working on things you can do, easier.

So maybe it's time to brush the dust off that old musical instrument, repolish your dancing shoes, unpack your tools, and return to some old skills. They may be outside the ability balloon just now, but you'll never get them back if you don't work on them.

And maybe there's a bonus or two to be had.

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