kid playing piano

Scott H Young talks about something I happen to agree with whole-heartedly. For a long time since I was young I’ve been asked how did I become such a good drawer, that it’s such a gift. But I always say that I just did it a lot.

This lie of talent, of gifted-ness has to be one of the most poisonous lies people have deceived themselves into believing. The belief that certain people, maybe even us, were born with abilities that you lack the power to replicate. Unfortunately, if you tell a big enough lie enough times, people start to believe it.

Scott breaks up the misinformation in two parts. Firstly outlining that although you may be more suited to a particular skill, or actually have a small gain in a certain area, it can’t account for any real advantage. The second part is about building the skills you don’t have.

Discrepancy of Skill

I believe at some point every person who develops a high degree of skill stumbles onto the right formula for success. Inborn talent might be able to explain small differences in skill, but it can hardly account for the huge differences present in society.

Conscious Practice

I made huge leaps in my public speaking skills because after each speech I did, I was evaluated and used those evaluations to pick out points of improvement. This iterative process meant that with just an hour of investment each week for a few months and I’ve had a few people think I had been practicing for years.

I’d like to see more discussion in this line of thinking. Can inborn talents be accounted for any great level of success in a field? Is there such a thing as inborn talent at all? Do some skills just come easier to some people than others?

The Myth Of Talent – [ScottHYoung]

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