Einstein’s Rubber BallNovember 30th, 2012 · 18 comments
Detecting Deep Work
An interesting nugget from Robert Greene’s new book, Mastery: when Einstein was working on the theory of relativity, he held a rubber ball that he would squeeze when straining his mind to grapple with a particularly hard piece of the theory.
Elsewhere in the book, Greene talks about Einstein’s lifelong commitment to the violin as a tool with which he trained himself to focus. (This might be from Daniel Coyle’s Talent Code; I’m reading both simultaneously and often confuse the two)
These are tantalizing hints supporting my hypothesis that the ability to think deeply and produce real value is something that requires technique and practice. They’re also another reason why I get annoyed when people begin and end a discussion on making an impact with a dumbly simple slogan like “follow your passion!”