Archive for May, 2010

Don’t give up on your talent.

May 24, 2010

Whether you acknowledge it, or deny it, we all have talents.  Do you remember the first time you realized your ability?  I certainly do.

I was in second grade, and we had to write a short story based on a picture.  The picture in this case was a man cleaning up his yard, palm fronds were everywhere.  He had a disappointed look on his face as he surveyed the damage.  Obviously it was the aftermath of a hurricane.  Most of the other kids wrote stories that read like news stories, in a very basic way, of course.  My story was more like the War of the Worlds.  My teacher, Ms. Fitz, pulled me aside after class, and told me I should consider pursuing a career in writing.

That was the first time I had some idea of my ability in writing, and creative arts.  This kind of story is not unique to me.  Everyday kids and adults are informed of their unique abilities.  The problem is that throughout the years pressure from family to follow a certain path, and peer pressure from friends, keep our true talent under the surface.

I’m not talking to those who have the advantage of following their dreams without so much as a negative comment; I’m talking to those who have been told their talent is stupid, or worthless.  I was always told that my talents in the creative arts will never be able to pay the bills, and that there are always better people than me at writing, and photography.  I don’t deny that I’m not the best, I accept that.  So what makes a talent?  There are two ingredients.

The first is ability.  Some people say that it means you don’t have to work as hard as others, but that isn’t true.  I went to school with a kid who had a wonderful sense of humor, but he had no natural artistic ability; his older brother had that.  Every day, he would draw, and with a tremendous amount of hard work, he eventually became extremely good at drawing, even surpassing his brother.  He put his own sense of humor into his drawings, and made some of the funniest comics I ever had the pleasure of reading.

Just because you aren’t good at it the first time doesn’t mean you can’t get the ability, just work hard, and don’t give up.

The second is drive.  This part is even more important than a natural ability.  Without it, you will never succeed.  Think back to a time to when you first learned to ride a bike, or learned to cook.  Did you get it right the first time?  Probably not; no one ever does.  More than likely, you fell of the bike several times before you could stay up; or you baked a cake with two cups of baking soda, and two tablespoons of flour. (or was that just me)  In the end you kept at it, and learned from your mistakes until you got it right.

It’s a proven fact that you will only learn what you are motivated to learn, and that motivation, becomes the drive.  If you have a drive to do something, don’t ever let anyone stop you.  If you feel something is important, then that is what you should pursue.  It may take some hard work, but if it’s important to you, then it will be worth the effort.

Enjoy,

Allen