This blog is part of the elective ‘Become the Owner of Your Learning’ at ArtEZ University of the Arts, Arnhem
The whole idea of Talent the way I see it is astonishingly simple:
DO WHAT YOU’RE GOOD AT
And maybe you should write that on a piece of paper and hang it on the wall as a motto.
If everybody would do it life would be simple and we would benefit from one another and enjoy doing this. Start doing it yourself, become inspiring for the ones around you to do the same, and simplify your life and become happy with it.
We do what we are good at spontaneously and we have to learn it at the same time. A paradox? Actually what we have to (re)learn is to trust this. Trust to become great in what you already are good at, to investigate in your talent.
That might seem an easy thing to do, but it isn’t. Your talent is so natural for you that you can easily overlook it: ‘I just am like that’, ‘It is nothing special’. This is not true and you have to discover that first! Often allowing yourself the change of perspective from ‘Anybody could do this’, to ‘I am the one you need for a job like this’ is like an earthquake and some help can be needed to make this change.
And if you do realise it, it still takes a lot of courage to stand up for what you are good at. It generally is encouraged to be modest, so it is already difficult to speak out for yourself, let alone in public. But although modesty is a good quality, there is nothing good about not acknowledging what you are good at, since it keeps you away from trusting and expressing it. It blocks your talent and obstructs others to profit from it. That’s why in my method and lessons for the conservatory Talent takes such an important place.
Society feeds mistrust in our own talent, in who we are. We are not good enough and we are constantly told that we should improve. But you cannot improve who you are and you don’t need to. You are great. You have to discover how great you are and in what exactly you are great, but not mistrust the fact that you are.
Mistrust penetrates deep in our system since you see it reinforced everywhere. In how we treat each other, the issues that we deal with as a society. It is a widely spread perception of shortage, where nature, also your nature, from itself creates an overwhelming abundance. So we have to (re)learn to look at life and ourselves again in this way.
How do you look at the glass: is it half full or half empty? Not good enough or great as it is with a beautiful possibility to fill it to the max? Is the apple tree at start, with just two little leaves above the ground, not good enough? Do you look at shortage or at possibilities? Suppose other species could think. Not in any tree or animal the thought of shortage would ever come up. Shortage in our true nature just doesn’t exist. We create it.
Try to feel the difference between the concept of shortage, delivered by your dragons and delivered by the outer world (other person’s dragons) compared to the concept of abundance, which is our true nature. It makes all the difference if you learn to look at yourself as abundant. It is directly influencing your functioning and growth, both in speed and direction, and you will allow yourself to be happy with it.
So the topic of talent is about trust. It is about finding that place in yourself where your quality lies, about saying yes to it, giving it your confidence, and act and grow from there.