Effort over Ability
The Olympics have been great to watch. My 8 year old daughter is...well...obsessed to say the least..and I love it. Every morning I get a complete report of who won the night before (when she stayed up and the old man fell asleep) and what I could expect when I tuned in that night. She is immersed, engaged, and clearly interested.
The conversations have also led us to talk about something I have preached in my classroom for years: TALENT will only take you so far...HARD WORK carries you to your destination. When you teach music, as I have for 15 years, you see some truly talented, gifted, and unique students who come with so many gifts and abilities. I am in awe of their ABILITY. I respect their GIFTS. I recognize their STRENGTHS. The truth is though, I am not interested in TALENT, I am interested in WORK. The Olympics have reminded me of that.
EVERYONE on that television is GIFTED. They make doing some impossible things look easy. The REAL story comes out when you hear about the HOURS, the WORK, the SACRIFICE they have endured to get there. Malcolm Gladwell talks about the 10,000 hours it takes to master something in his book Outliers. I would bolster that thought with the idea that those hours have to be engaged in growth and in the presence of expert teachers who assist you in perfecting your basic raw abilities.
I am reminded to keep fighting the good, tough, and resilient fight when it comes to my goals. If I am going to break world records, and truly be world class, I need to keep working, making sacrifices to get there, and stop relying on my raw talent alone.
Thanks for stopping by. These are musings on how I see leadership in the world and how I continue to try and grow through my lens.