I have never believed that anyone is born with ‘talent’. I do believe that someone who appears to be ‘exceptional, gifted or talented' grows up with a heightened sense of curiosity or desire for learning and exploring a particular subject. That intense focus will produce a person with a skill level far above the norm.
I don’t believe that a World Champion Rally Driver was ‘born’ to drive, they simply were immersed in a world of motorsport where the thrill of improving and winning creates an intense desire to compete, and win. The driving skill improved over years of training and learning, it was not with them at birth.
Most of us are familiar with the ‘10,000 hour rule’, ie invest 10,000 hours in intensively practicing a skill, and you can become World Class. The stories of Tiger Woods, Mozart and Andy Murray (to name just a couple) are testament to this theory.
Some say that the ability to draw and paint is an exception to this rule; that the ART gene is inherited. But is it true?
My daughter Charlotte is an exceptional artist, but was she born with that skill? Well, to be honest, she is the 5th generation of my family that has artistic leanings (I am not bad myself!). However, it wasn’t until she was about 11 years old that I started to notice that her drawings and paintings were better than they might ordinarily be for her age. But did she have 'inherited' talent, or did she simply have a more curious eye - more of a ‘seeing’ skill than a drawing skill? When she started to spend extended time painting and drawing, her skill accelerated at an extraordinary rate.
Charlotte is 20 today (Happy Birthday Chooch) and is on her way home from Leeds as I write, where she is studying for a Fine Art degree. She remains almost obsessed with seeing, discovering and understanding colour, form, shape and tone. She has developed her skill through intense practice, and an insatiable desire to understand and explore. Her curiosity is extraordinary, and that, I believe, is what fuels her ability.
What brilliance have you not discovered in yourself? What a shame it would be if you never discovered your ‘talent’. No one is brilliant at anything the first time they try. Brilliance comes from relentless practice and commitment.
Be curious. Be relentless. He who dares, will win.
Read more about my take on high performance: World Class Thinking World Class Behaviour. BUY HERE: http://www.pennymallory.co.uk/store/p2/world-class-thinking-world-class-behaviour.html
Keynote Speaker, Executive Coach, Author