I remember watching sporting events on the small family TV when I was a teen marveling at the shear beauty and grace of the athletes performing at their highest level. Growing up in the eighties I had the opportunity to marvel at great speakers such as former US president Ronald Regan. Although my family were lifelong liberal supporters I couldn’t help marvel at the magical oratory skills of good old Ronnie. He definitely had the “It” factor of a leader much like a quarterback like Joe Montana, cool, and level headed when the pressure to perform were at its highest.
Most people see these public figures on TV believing these people possess special talents only the chosen few have. Today, I watched a documentary on former quarterback prodigy Todd Marinovich. From the day he was born his father pushed and trained his son to be a future NFL quarterback. His intense training schedule thrust Todd into the public eye as a teen where he was dubbed by the press as Robo Quarterback.
He was eventually drafted by the Oakland Raiders in the 1st round but was out of the league within 2 years falling prey to drugs. What I found interesting about the documentary was in the scene where Todd shares how strangers would come up to him and say, “if I had your talent I wouldn’t have squandered it like you did.” His response was what people don’t understand is yes he did have genetic gifts, but the majority of his success came from years of tremendous hard work.
The problem was he no longer enjoyed what he was doing anymore which lead to his fall from grace.
Do you enjoy what you are doing? If yes, you are most likely producing great work for yourself and your organization. If not, you are just going day to day collecting a pay check and most likely not fulfilling your highest potential in life. Most people see the success but they never comprehend the tremendous struggle and hard work it took to reach that level of excellence.
I can say this with first hand experience as my family struggled for 10 years to make ends meet with the family business until they finally found success. Most would have given up, resigning themselves to a life of broken dreams, but my parents would have none of it.
It’s sad so many people leave this earth never achieving what they are truly capable of. They don’t maximize the special talents they were born with. It’s a shame since those special talents can do so much to serve our society. I believe most people do want to reach their highest potential. I’ve never heard a child say I want to grow up and be a nobody.
I remember the teacher going around the classroom when I was a kid asking each one to stand up and state what they would like to be when they grew up. Fireman, doctor, astronaut, actress, or whatever was in our imaginations at the time. The problem is as the years go by we develop more limiting beliefs due to our personal experiences.
Remember you to have special talents, and who is to say you can’t be one of these people to make an impact in this world. However, before moving forward you need to identify what those special talents are. What makes you unique or special?
Here are seven ways to identify your special talents:
1. What do you like to do the most? Something you would do even if you can do it for free? I can tell you mine is sharing my knowledge of Brazilian Jiu-jitsu and using the principles of martial arts to change lives.
2. When you engage in this activity it should feel natural to you. It can be art, sport, business, science, building things, or helping others. I would describe the feeling as being lost in the action. It feels so natural you lose track of time. People will comment how effortlessly you do things.
3. This talent will have brought you the most success and joy from a young age till now.
4. You pick up this activity with ease and always feel like you are in a zone.
5. You are fascinated by this talent you have. So much so you lose track of time. It’s constantly on your mind and you enjoy studying everything about it.
6. You have the desire to constantly improve on it every day.
7. You follow and admire other people who share the same talent by modelling their success.
If you currently follow these steps, then you are on the path to living your purpose in life. They will create a sense of wholeness and self-satisfaction knowing you are doing something your heart truly desires.