Creating the Perfect Circle (a Zen Proverb)

Josh Linkner
September 12, 2021

Josh Linkner

Five-time tech entrepreneur, hyper-growth CEO, NY Times bestselling author and venture capitalist.

One day a small boy was playing near the river when he saw an old man with a long beard seated in the sand. The boy moved closer and watched as the old man drew a perfect circle into the sand.

"Hey, old man, how did you draw such a perfect circle?" asked the boy.

The old man looked at the boy and said, "I don't know, I just tried, and tried again here, you try."

The old man handed the stick to the boy and walked away. The boy began drawing circles in the sand. At first his circles came out too wide, or too long, or too crooked. But as time went by the circles began to look better and better.

He kept trying and then, one bright morning, he drew a perfect circle into the sand. Then he heard a small voice behind him.

"Hey old man, how did you draw such a perfect circle?"

(story credit: BuddhaGroove.com)

My view: When we witness mastery, it’s almost always the result of sacrifice and practice. Masters make things look easy and natural through a pragmatic and deliberate approach to building their skills. If you really want mastery in business, health, art, parenting, or any other worthwhile pursuit, worry far less on talent and much more on your practice regimen. Mastery comes from doing the reps. [tweet this]

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