I see prime examples more often than I would like. They are the people with extraordinary gifts who work in professions removed from their core strengths. You’d never know their true potential. They might be a ground-breaking architect, the next Albert Einstein, an Ansel Adams phenomenon, or a Nobel Laureate. Instead, they bag your groceries, deliver your latest Amazon order, pour your morning latte, or complete your tax return. Those paychecks ensure you pay the rent and put food on the table while it strips fulfillment from your grasp. Life is insidious. It undermines what exists in our DNA for the false safety inherent in making a living and shouldering the mantel of becoming a responsible adult. There are countless stories depicting artists as unsavory characters, leading unenviable lives, except for their brilliant talent. The underlying message is, “don’t pursue the genius inside of you.”
Louise Nevelson said: “My theory is that when we come on this earth, many of us are ready-made…Some of us–most of us–have genes that are ready for certain performances. Nature gives you these gifts.” When I ask people about their unique talent, few can answer. Finding the clues to identify your calling is a simple process of observation. Listen when others comment about you how well you perform a task that is so difficult for everyone else. Pay attention when time slips away while you accomplish the work you love. Your ability lies in that activity. But knowing still isn’t enough.
Natural talents require nurturing to develop to their fullest, and that demands dedicated practice. Keep the day job and invest in working artist’s hours. Early mornings, late nights, lunch breaks, and weekends provide untapped moments to live, breathe, and fuel your passion. It is the one thing that will guarantee you a fulfilling life.
Are you honing your rare gift?
Keep on writing.
Jo Hawk The Writer