Despite what you’ve been conditioned to believe, we are born with very few, if any, natural talents and skills. Excellence is borne not of any particular innate ability, but of practice. In other words, you can be good at whatever you want.
If you observe or listen to some of the world’s most accomplished athletes or business leaders you’ll find one basic yet common denominator–they all practice their craft with a relentless amount of consistency and passion. When we ground ourselves with the notion that we don’t have—or weren’t born with—the talent to succeed we use this idea as a reason or excuse not to work hard.
I’ve seen these thoughts prevail in many of my clients, time and time again. They say things like… ‘I’ve always been fat so I’ll never be my ideal body weight’ and use these deep rooted notions as excuses which in turn stunts their progress. All the while, not realizing that possessing the wrong perspective can hold them back from so many things. When you start to believe that talent is the most essential piece to the puzzle of success, you’ve built up a wall all on your own. This can have some very negative effects. If you shift your thinking and start labelling ‘talent’ as skills, you subconsciously tell yourself that what you’re seeing, hearing, reading or practicing are all learnable traits.
Although the media has us believing that most successful people are just simply talented, hard work really does trump talent. When you first meet or hear about a successful person, it’s easy to believe that they must have been born in possession of fabulous gifts. In reality, there are numerous examples of famous people who have relied on hard work.
For example, legendary basketball player Michael Jordan was dropped from his high school basketball team, but would go on to become one of the greatest sportspeople of all time. Oprah Winfrey was once advised that she “wasn’t fit for television.” These stories illustrate that not every successful person finds immediate success and recognition. It’s hard work and perseverance that ultimately pays off…And the same idea applies with respect to you reaching your fitness goals.
Either way you look at it, success has less to do with talent and more to do with hard work. Just because someone is naturally talented doesn’t mean that they don’t need to put in hard work. In fact it’s quite often the opposite. The role of talent is vastly overstated in our culture, and to me, it is readily apparent that effort is by far the most important factor in our success in any pursuit.