Beethoven Finally Goes Deaf so He Can Make Great Music

I’ve got a hypothesis that might shock you. Here goes it. “Your best work might come outside of your area of strength.” Don’t get me wrong. Finding mastery and bona fide strengths is key to creating value in the world. And, there is a bit of a trap here, where gravitating towards our typical strengths and leaning on them heavily can be a trap. 

When do strengths become a crutch?

I don’t know the answer to that specifically and neither does anyone else, but entertaining the danger is the point here. 

I learned recently that Beethoven went deaf at the end of his career. Can you imagine? Your whole personality is sound and your ability to hear disappears. Brutal!

What happened next was extremely surprising, though. At first, Beethoven lost his ability to hear higher frequency tones. He resisted and fought this impending doom pounding the keys, breaking pianos, and even slowly writing music with less and less higher notes to compensate. Arthur Brooks wrote in his book, From Strength to Strength, that “high notes (above 1568 Hz) made up 80 percent of Beethoven’s string quartets written in his twenties but dropped to less than 20 percent in his forties.”

Ultimately, his hearing left him and he resisted no more. Without the need (or ability) to hear the notes of his music, Beethoven wrote “hypothetically” and the result was the most regarded music of his career. 

Who knew being able to hear would get in the way of making such great music?

6/14/24 WOD

DEUCE Athletics GPP

Complete 4 rounds of the following:
8 Half Kneeling Landmine Press (ea)
15 DB Tate Presses
5 Banded Alligator Walk

For Time…
100 Double Unders
7th St Corner Run
80 KB Swings (71/53)
Bull Run
60 Push Ups
7th St Hill Run
50 DB Forward Lunges (45/30)
6th St Hill Run
40 Burpees



Every :90, Complete 1 Push Jerk @75/80/75/80/85/80/85/90/92.5%

Then, complete 3 rounds for reps of:
In :75…
10 Deadlifts (225/155)
Max Burpees to Target
-Rest 3:45-