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Always still learning

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Stoicism (space on Quora)

"What toxic habits destroy success?
....what prevents success that one has not yet reached."

"Complacency - falsely believing that “now that success has been attained, it will last forever”—but nothing last forever. The laws of entropy guarantee change and decay. Eternal vigilance promises better preparation against inevitable trouble and surprises.

Low competitive bar - not taking on big challenges or tough competitors. Only “competing” against weaker people or teams. One cannot improve by beating easy competition. No one ever made the big leagues who stayed in the little leagues. Always seek out people who are better than you and who beat you up—study, learn, practice, and return for the rematch. Someday you will win.

Maintaining appearance of omniscience - when people look at you as an “expert,” they expect you to have all the answers, but of course you can never have all the answers because situations are always changing; what was true yesterday might not be true today. Every day you must question, revisit your assumptions, verify; always be willing to change opinion or admit error or ignorance.

Hearing too much praise but not enough criticism - a very common problem for “stars” in various fields is that they are surrounded by yes-men and fawning acolytes—they do not hear enough blunt and honest criticism. Always seek out intelligent and useful criticism. Smart feedback can help you change course if you’re going in the wrong direction. The truth is more important than your ego.

Laziness and failure to keep learning and growing. Any true master knows that “mastery” and “success” are just preliminary conditions. There is no “ultimate mastery” or “ultimate success”; you never get all the way there. The journey keeps going. True masters are humble even when they have much to be proud of. The great Spanish painter Francisco de Goya (1746–1828) did some of his greatest work in his old age. He did not just repeat old successes—he tried bold new visions and techniques. Until he died at age 82, he never stopped stretching himself. This self-portrait shows him as an old man with arthritis and walking sticks:"
“Aún aprendo … “ “I am still learning.”
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