Day 11: Why 3?

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Day 11:  Why 3?

Day 11:  I’m a fan of the number 3.  It’s my favorite.  Has been for as long as I can remember.  Three Hershey kisses, three ice cubes, three friends at tea parties.  It’s my go-to number.  In Wait a Minute, the film short I made back in the Paleolithic period on actual 16mm film that no one except my six-year-old niece ever saw or appreciated, it’s a runner throughout—3:33am is the key turning point, it’s three days until a big birthday and three friends help her through it.  Whenever I play the lottery, it’s always checked off as the mega number.  Plus, it’s my limit in drinks and in tacos.  With this kind of intimate info about my love affair with trois, it’s probably no surprise I am choosing to produce three narrative feature films during this experiment.  Other than the sobering thought that it’s potentially impossible to achieve, I just love that I’m setting out to make three movies.  Not one or two or four but three—oh, that’s the stuff.  Say it with me…three.  Slips off the tongue like a secret, a promise, and a friend.

Say it with me...

Even after hearing about my unnatural attachment to the number three, you’re still probably wondering, why a trio of films with little to no cash?  Even making just one would be an accomplishment worth boasting about whether it sucks or not.  Here’s my less creepy reasoning:  how am I ever going to get great at producing narrative feature films unless I practice deeply and deliberately and for 10,000 hours actually making them? After reading Talent is Overrated by Geoff Colvin, Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell, and The Talent Code by Daniel Coyle, I’m convinced that deliberate practice, the 10,000 hour rule and deep practice makes perfect…or, at the very least, better and, hopefully, a little more proficient.  I’m highly influenced by the research and concepts in these books because their analysis makes sense to me.  Daniel Coyle’s especially because he identifies “the three key elements of the talent code” that I’ve been instinctually searching for these past few months while developing my experiment and site:

  1. Deep Practice – “not ordinary practice but a highly targeted, error-focused process.”
  2. Ignition – “motivational fuel”
  3. Master Coaching –  “the talent whisperer”

He writes in the introduction, “Each element is useful on its own, but their convergence is the key to creating skill.”  And, the best part is that he constructs his thesis on all of this latest research brain science stuff—something else I’m a huge fan of—so freakin’ fun.  When we do deep practice we’re building this rope type matter in our noggins called myelin and the thicker we make it the better we are at the skill we’re trying to get great at.  I’m butchering the scientific lingo so I highly recommend you read the book…or all three if you have a library card, a kindle or even better, a leftover holiday gift certificate to Amazon—kill some trees and buy an old fashioned paperback!  Real books are a problem for me.  I “expletive” love real books.  I’m addicted to them, plain and simple.  The proof is in my overstuffed bookshelves.   There was recently an intervention. Letters were read, tears shed and a trip took place.  Luckily, it wasn’t filmed but let’s just say I’m cut off from Amazon and will be getting my ass to the library every week for a fix.

To get back on point, the plan to produce three narrative feature films, create a motivational website and find a mentor is me attempting to converge those three key elements.  At the end of this year, regardless of the outcome of my experiment, by thinking outside the box inside the box and creating from what I have I hope to have practiced deeply doing something I love, found and shared motivation freely, been mentored by some kick ass master coaches and built up some serious myelin and skills.

Until tomorrow, create from what you have…and practice deeply and deliberately building your myelin and your skills in the process.

Kelli Joan Bennett is a filmmaker, actress, writer, entrepreneur, advocate for creative thinking and Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Think Outside The Box Inside The Box Media.



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