Obsession is something not so well seen by society simply because it means that the obsessed person is somehow tied or conditioned by that obsession. Yes, of course this is right in certain situations, especially when those situations are hurtful for us, but is it bad when it comes to our craft?
Let’s take a look about what being obsessed means. It means to think about something all the time without the ability to stop. It also means that we get cranky/frustrated/pissed off when we cannot think or do what that obsession implies. Basically, it’s an addiction (you can see here my post about addictions). Sure, it all seems like a bad thing, but how come all successful people below say we need to be obsessed with our craft in order to master it?
I think obsession is required to achieve mastery. That is simply because someone that puts 10 hours of workweek in his/hers craft will be “beaten” by someone who puts 50 hours of workweek in his/hers craft. Okay, we can take into consideration talent and things like that, but in time, experience will make the difference. Moreover, obsession will bring so much more experience than anything else because the mind and the behavior will be oriented towards that craft.
What do you think about this? Is obsession required to achieve mastery?
16 thoughts on “Are you obsessed with your craft?”
Yes but it comes with it’s downsides like everything in life.
We are totally not writing off its downsides. Just exalting its good so that it can be remembered as an option.
Yes, of course. Focusing on a certain thing implies not focusing on others…
My music teacher told me to achieve mastery in anything, you must put in 10,000 hours. Anyone hoping to improve themselves in a field should aim for this, but sometimes it is best to take a more leisurely approach than to run, run, run! I think obsession can be healthy and useful, but burnout is real!
TROOF. GOOTTA…TAKE IT…IN INCREMENTS!
Yes, burnout is real, but it’s related to the craft itself. There are things that give more energy than they take if they resonate to us so it’s a matter of having the right craft I guess. I know that 10,000 hours theory and it seems scary if we don’t love our craft, but it’s an adventure we’re looking forward to if we love what we do.
Ikr. Like, who could get burnt out from writing?
“Yes, of course this is right in certain situations, especially when those situations are hurtful for us, but is it bad when it comes to our craft?” I was just talking about this yesterday!
“I think obsession is required to achieve mastery…Moreover, obsession will bring so much more experience than anything else because the mind and the behavior will be oriented towards that craft.” Hell yeah. I guess this is all to say the average person doesn’t get much done because they are not obsessed!
Well, when we want to make as little as possible and then lay around, we cannot do as much as someone who is obsessed makes. Thank you for reading and for sharing your thoughts!
So true! And thanks for liking my contributions, lol.
I think not, dedication definitely but not obsession.
I think with obsession it becomes just you and the craft and aside from risking burnout it also means you are shutting yourself off to the external which means that you are shutting out the opportunity to inspire/ receive inspiration. Without inspiration there is no creativity and without creativity you will only be very competent and not a master.
I think that if the “inspiration material” is related to the craft, we’ll see it.
My whole life (in school, in writing, even in “simply” looking for a job) I have been the other kind. Not at all obsessed because I was applying the “work smarter, not harder” and succeeding better than my peers spending double the amount of time with lower results. Growing up, I became slightly more ‘obsessed’ but definitely I cannot define myself as the one who will dedicate her own life to a single piece of craft (in working, in writing, in baking a cake). I more “go with the flow’, let myself be driven by inspiration and natural inclination, and see what happens. I admire the obsessed, though, but it’s truly not my style. Maybe because I strive for efficiency (well done, interesting, and done fast) more than for perfection 🙂
Interesting! Could someone work hard and smart in the same time?
Indeed! But if you can work smarter, why should you work harder? Except if your work is also the love of your life. I like my job, but my life is something else, so… I prefer to dedicate to it as less time as I can 😉