We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit. 

Aristotle (384–322 BC)
Greek Philosopher
Four levels of Competence: the idea helps to understand our own learning process and to motivate.
Four levels of Competence: the idea helps to understand our own learning process and to motivate.

Level up – level by level

Broadly speaking, there are four levels of competence : as a child you might not know that something like a bicycle exists and that you could ride it (unconscious incompetence). Then, you see someone passing by on a bike and you become aware that ‘riding a bike’ exists, but you are not able to do it (conscious incompetence). Of course you wish to learn it and your parents teach you how. Achieving this goal requires practise, practise, practise. While you are practising you concentrate on using the pedals, keeping your balance and traveling in the right direction — but it works (conscious competence)! Years later you go to school by bike every morning and you no longer need to think about how to ride your bike. Rather you think of the maths test the next morning or the beautiful girl you saw yesterday. Riding your bike is no longer something you have to consciously think about (unconscious competence). But to attain this stage, you had to pass through all the four levels of competence and practise a lot.

But you have added a skill, which is fun and useful throughout your life. How many more skills are waiting for you?

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