I just finished reading Mastery by Robert Greene, and I thought it was a really awesome demystification of the processes of self-discovery, practice, apprenticeship, and creativity. I had read his other books (The 48 Laws of Power, The Art of Seduction, and The 50th Law), which I also enjoyed. In this book, he debunks the myth of the genius inspired by the heavens and shows how some of the most masterful individuals throughout the ages and alive today got their biggest breaks as a result of extremely hard work, dedication, and allowing themselves the freedom to fail and do things in a unique way.
What made Mastery very interesting was the way the author blended stories of many different types of "masters" throughout history (Darwin, Edison, Franklin, Goethe, Mozart, Einstein, and many contemporary masters as well) and drew out the most relevant lessons. It was neat to read some many mini-biographies and hear about how these were all normal guys who put in extra-normal hours to the crafts they wanted to pursue.
Some of the core lessons I took away from the book were as follows:
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