You have probably heard people describe someone as having ‘natural talent’ or as having been ‘born talented’. Maybe the person being described has been you?
But what, exactly, is talent? And is talent something we are born with, or something that we have to work for?
Whether you've got it or not, this post has the answers you need.
We all know or know of someone that we would describe as ‘talented’. This person could be anyone, from your favorite guitarist to your husband with his unwavering ability to cook delicious family meals for all every night.
Talent comes in all shapes and sizes; but what is it about these ‘talents’ that make them just that? If you think about all of the talented people you know, the one thing that they have in common is that they make what they do look easy.
These people that you admire for their talent have been practicing whatever it is for so long or for so often that to you their talent looks almost second nature. But were they born with this ability, say, to play the guitar or finely chop a courgette at astonishing speed? No, of course not! They learned the long and hard way, with precision, efficiency and most importantly of all, practice.
This leads us to what is arguably the key ingredient for talent…
We may find that we are naturally good at some things, maybe even a lot of things. But without that passion, that's all we'll ever remain; good.
Talent is about having both skill and passion for something. Passion bridges the gap between being good and being great.
We can be skilled at something, but without the necessary passion, our hearts just aren't in it, which means that we’ll never strive to be any better than we already are. However, passion without the actual skills can still make for a successful combination. As with enough passion, we become willing to put in the hours and work needed to be great at what we love.
Simply put, our passions are what become our talents.
So, we know that when it comes to developing talent, skills are great but it is the passion that can take you all the way.
There are two vital steps needed for self-improvement in whatever you wish to do:
Thanks to the Law of Attraction we know that where our mind goes, our reality follows. So, if you want to become better at something you need to get intentional about it.
If you've always enjoyed writing and are often praised on your grammar know-how perhaps your intention should be to develop your writing skills?
This may sound like obvious advice, but you’d be surprised by how many people still think that in order to have a talent they need to pluck something new and exciting out of thin air.
Look closer to home; think about your life and what makes you happy. More often than not, our talents lie in the everyday skills that we overlook but others admire us for.
You know what you love, what you’re good at and you’re beginning to see the bigger picture. But how do you take passion and a few basic skills and transform them into a talent?
Becoming better at something, no matter what it is, calls for small and specific changes. For example, you may realize that you’re passionate about music; you’ve identified that you’re a quick learner and have a good ear for music. Because of this, you've decided that you want to become better at playing the guitar. However, it’d be silly for you to then immediately start sending your demo tape to every music producer you've ever heard of.
Instead, you might want to grow what skills you already have. Perhaps you decide to commit to a guitar lesson once a week for 2 months? Next, you may decide that you’re ready to put your name down for some small, local gigs?
Small steps lead to big gains. It’s likely that there’s a big space right now between where you are and where you’d like to go with your passion. However, by setting yourself small and achievable goals, you’ll gradually master what others should soon begin to describe as your ‘talent'.
It’s said that in order to truly become the best at something, it takes a minimum of 10,000 hours practice. Don’t let this daunt you! If you think about it and consider the many things that you’re probably already talented at, be it listening, empathizing with others, cooking, writing, calculating, dancing, we all harbor talents that are unknown even to ourselves.
To begin uncovering new talents, all you've got to do is identify your passions, get specific with your intentions and practice, practice, practice.
So don’t be modest, what are your talents? We may not be born with talent, but we are all born with the potential to make our realities what we want them to be. This is a huge opportunity for all of us, take it.