Let’s suppose I want to become an expert at throwing screwed up balls of paper into my bin.
If I sit next to the bin and hold the paper above the bin, I can be fairly sure I’ll hit my target just by opening my fingers and letting the paper fall downwards.
That takes little skill on my part.
Okay, I need to make this a bit harder. If I move my chair a foot away from the bin, now I have to actually throw the paper. I played a bit of basketball and have kept my eye in throwing my daughter’s nappies across our kitchen into a bin, so this isn’t a big deal for me. BUT I have enough self awareness to appreciate that this is no longer going to be automatic. Occasionally I’m going to miss.
If I move back another foot I’m going to get even less reliable.
If I get bored of the whole thing and want to be Steph Curry I can get off my chair and walk a few more feet away. All of a sudden I’m going to keep missing. Missing will be the norm. I can keep trying but I’m still going to keep missing. My technique’s going to go to pieces and it’s basically going to be random. I’ve tried too much, too quickly.
No, the real approach to becoming a paper-to-bin assassin is to take small steps. Master the drop, master the shot from a foot away, master the shot from two feet away, gradually build up the difficulty. I might struggle from 5 feet if I try too quickly, but not if I’ve just spent a week mastering a shot from 4 feet.
Now imagine if I went from 1 foot to 10 feet away, and also had lots of distractions. Suddenly there’s a lot of noise around me. Maybe someone keeps kicking me while I’m trying to perform. Maybe someone else is jumping up and saying boo right in front of my face. You’re asking me to go from a foot away to 10 feet away, with all this going on? Honestly? I don’t think my technique’s going to stand up to this. Sure, if I’m a freak I might be able to rise above it, but realistically I need to build up to this test. Get me shooting reliably from 10 feet then get someone kicking me. Hopefully my technique stands up to the stresses.