Is Talent Overrated?

by | Feb 10, 2023 | career, General | 0 comments

I used to be a very good dancer. Today, I couldn’t dance to save my life. I also used to have really full hair. Now, it’s really tough explaining to people where my daughter gets her long hair from, because, quite frankly, I have no evidence of my past glory.

When I muster the words to start explaining my ‘once upon a time’ prowess, my husband butts in to remind me, by saying, ‘I get am before, no be property.’ Nigerians, please translate this…

If you think back to primary school, you will remember some very brilliant classmates, nominated class prefects while you may have been the average kid. You will also remember some classmates out rightly labelled dull by some teachers you rather forget. Where are those classmates now? How did everyone turn out? Mixed results and surprises I am sure.

You may have had it in you, doesn’t guarantee you will have it for life and that you don’t have it now, is no predictor that you will not have it in future.

A few years ago, I read a book, ‘Talent is Overrated.’ It cited several studies on high performers in different fields. The studies revealed that the best performers spent more time in deliberate practice. The person who came first place often practiced more than the person who came second, sometimes practicing more by a few minutes a day. The key to high performance was revealed as consistent, deliberate and longer practice time.

We shouldn’t take things for granted, especially our talent.

If you don’t use it, you will lose it.

Your talent isn’t enough, and if you are familiar with the parable of talents, you will know that talent can be buried, and when it is, it yields no benefit to us and everyone who should be blessed by it.

Consistent work breeds skill, and people who work at it, always have an edge over those who expect magic. One extra hour of work put into any endeavour puts you ahead of 90% of your peers.

Every now and then, I get the odd comment that I write well, thank God🙏. Now, it’s clear to me it’s because I write consistently. Since I was 5 years old, I have been writing. I keep trodding on, even on days I don’t feel like.

That high performer you admire, puts in more hours of work than you do, whether you believe it or not, they work it.

So, if you think you have put in enough, just maybe, you haven’t.

Don’t be ‘I get am before’, like me and my dancing.

If you want to see results, keep at it, it will pay off. It always does.

Grit beats talent everyday. Remember that.

What talent have you buried? What skills do you need to hone?

Your thoughts?

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