Have you ever thought about how long it takes to be really good at something? Or have you thought that if you weren’t born with a natural talent in something then you couldn’t be an expert at it?

According to Malcom Gladwell, in his book Outliers, it takes about 10,000 hours of practice in your life to be an expert in your respective field. This crosses over in all fields from sports, music, chess player, business and even master criminals.

Daniel Levitin, a Neuroscientist, was quoted in the book saying “It seems that it takes this brain this long (10,000 hours) to assimilate all that it needs to know to achieve true mastery.” Even Mozart didn’t write his outstanding concertos until he had his 10,000 hours of practice, which translates into about 10 years of serious practice and dedication.

Gladwell gives examples of this from Bill Gates (Microsoft) and Bill Joy (Sun Microsystems) to the Beatles. Their success and rise to fame was a combination of a few things, but all had the 10,000 hour expert rule associated with them.

Given the awareness from this great research, are you putting in dedicated, nose to the grindstone work to be an expert in something? You might like that song “I want to be a Billionaire so freaking bad”, but are you working towards your 10,000 hours of focused, dedicated practice to get there?