Anyone that has ever tried to master a new skill, even learning how to DJ, will tell you about plateaus. Plateaus are those times where even though you keep working hard, persevering, and shedding your blood, sweat, and tears you just can’t seem to make progress, whether it be at work, in the gym, or your hobby.
I’ve experienced plateaus many times in my life. In 2005 I was living in France and was trying to learn French. There would be times where things would just click; all the sudden I would find myself being able to communicate much more effectively with people. I would make huge leaps in my skills very quickly and be able to talk about subjects where I before I had lots of problems.
Then other times I would experience the exact opposite. I would feel like my abilities hadn’t improved in months. I would still get stuck on the same vocab, or have the same difficulties in certain subjects. It was extremely frustrating. “I’m studying hard every day. Why am I stuck? I feel stupid!” I would think to myself.
This has happened in other areas of my life too, from lifting weights in the gym, to playing sports in high school, to learning web design, mechanics, marksmanship, and any other skill I’ve tried to master. It can be frustrating but it’s just part of the learning process.
Whenever I’ve been stuck in a plateau there are two things that have always helped me smash through them and reach the next peak.
First is simply patience and determination. Perseverance. Like they say, when the going gets tough the tough get going. Don’t let yourself get discouraged, just keep pushing through. Realize that the plateau won’t last forever and while other people might lose heart and fall away from the pursuit, if you keep pushing forward your hard work will eventually pay off and you’ll reach the next level.
This happened all the time while I was learning French. When the going got tough, many of my classmates would take their foot off the gas. They’d start hanging out with more English speakers, spending less time studying, and making it easier on themselves. I’d start studying more grammar, literally read the dictionary, and spend more time around my French friends immersed in the language. I admit I was a bit of a nerd, but by the end of the year I spoke fluently and was able to go several months without speaking a word of English.
I 100% believe in that piece of advice yet the second thing I’m about to say is kind of contradictory. To break through plateaus you should try something different. Albert Einstein said the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.
This means that if you keep doing a certain action but the results don’t ensue, quit! Find a new action that works. Trying something new might provide that creative spark, that extra push, that helps you break through your plateau.
If you’re learning how to DJ and have been struggling through a plateau, I’d like to share something that might give you the chance to try something new. It’s our online DJ school and lets you study under expert DJs.
Most people I know learn DJing by teaching themselves, by reading DJ magazines and by copying their favorite musicians. Online DJ classes is a new idea but I think it might be just the thing to help you break through plateaus and reach the next level of your DJ skills. If you’re ready to step your game up, take a look today.