Albert Einstein is almost synonymous with the word ‘genius’! Usain Bolt, Lionel Messi, Lebron James are just a few of the people we call special and have placed a huge weight of this glory on a phenomenon we call ‘talent’! We will never be able to isolate these people from this mystical and partial share of divine ability. Or maybe we are a little too fast to find other reasons that excuse our inability to perform at the same level. What better reason than a phenomenon we cannot clearly define, measure or achieve? We have emphasized this so much that we believe it and have accepted that this extraordinary ability is a product of divine blessings or supernatural endowment. As usual, I like to hold a slightly different view with good reason.
Well, talent is what you make of it and that is it! If you believe that lack of talent is the reason for your inefficiency or your below-par performance at any activity, then that is what it will be for you. I see only two groups of people; Those who are dedicated and those who are not! Success is not a one step journey. It starts from the mind. There is the belief, followed by the relentless work that is fueled by passion. It is not easy to get to genius level and sometimes it is discouraging because it seems really easy for others. The bottom-line is that practice births perfection! It is the same principle we use to sharpen our tools and to polish stone or wood. Constant use removes rough edges. In the same vein, constant practice reduces errors and problems till near-perfection is achieved. This stage is what many people refer to as genius or super-talented level. So what exactly is talent? How does it differentiate one person from another? I believe we are all unique, but not in the sense that one person can achieve what others cannot achieve. There is a price to pay for everything, including the famous ‘talent’! And as Malcolm Gladwell put it, 10, 000 hours of practice will turn your novice into an expert, proficient at about anything! Cristiano Ronaldo (pardon my Football inclination) is the epitome of excellence achieved through grit, sweat and persistent practice!
Let’s bring this back home. What exactly do you want to achieve? Many people do not put in enough effort at improving and as you would guess, there will be little result. I believe half the effort, with today’s information splurge, will create a super ‘talented’ you! Put this practice in line with your passion it will be easier to attain genius status. Talent is the result of relentless and passionate practice not a predestined supernatural ability. Nike and Guinness commercials have tried to say this in different ways…you are made of more. True greatness lies within! We tend to ignore the hard work and practice hours of the geniuses! I believe if we put equal effort into our passions we will also become geniuses.