The myth of inborn talent

There are no secrets to success. It is the result of preparation, hard work, and learning from failure. Gen. Colin Powell 1937 – Often, we’ll look at remarkably talented individuals and wonder why we weren’t blessed with some innate ability that would rocket us to success. But studies of successful people have found little correlation between achievement and talent. It turns out that talent — a skill we’re born with — is highly overrated. Skeptical? Consider an experiment carried out by Hungarian psychologist Laszlo Polgar. He believed that talent is made, not born, and decided to test his theory: he would …
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When you must succeed

They can conquer who believe they can. Virgil It’s rather unfortunate, but as humans, we must be hardwired to seek the easy way out. We always seem to be looking for the path of least resistance. This behavior, while designed to conserve our resources, often keeps us from achieving our true potential. We have a bad habit of giving up on tasks when the going gets tough. But there are countless stories of humans who perform superhuman tasks when there’s no other choice. Our greatest achievements seem to come from situations where “failure is not an option” — an expression …
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Learning from two young musicians

If a seed of a lettuce will not grow, we do not blame the lettuce. Instead, the fault lies with us for not having nourished the seed properly. Buddhist proverb Recently, a friend from England shared an article about the musical achievements of his sons; he called it a shameless plug from a proud parent. Both of his sons are teenagers, and one had been selected for the second straight year to play in the National (UK) Children’s Wind Orchestra. The other had been selected for two years running to play in the National (UK) Children’s Regional Symphony Orchestra. I …
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