A person can be born with an innate talent. However, it is the persistence that gives it shape and strengthens it. It’s the day-to-day work and enriching environment that transforms an exceptional child into a genius. Thus, dimensions such as tenacity, ambition, and motivation can allow us to detach ourselves if we work on them.
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Geniuses are made, not born
We often think that geniuses are born with special dispositions and have nothing to do. Either we are born with an exceptional gift, or we are “determined” to enter this average and, in this case, luck may allow us to shine. But to believe that things are going that way is a mistake. Experts in intelligence, talent and creativity like Malcolm Gladwell bring us very important ideas that make us think.
For starters, a person can have a very high IQ; however, if it is not detected or if the social and personal context is not adequate, this potential will disappear. On the other hand, no genius will be able to detach himself if he does not use persistence. Without passion, determination,
Figures such as Steve Jobs, Stephen Hawking and Leonardo da Vinci are examples of persistence and hard work to deepen their field of knowledge. If there is anything that has defined them, it is this charisma and this desire to excel every day. Persistence is the spark that shines true genius.
“Success is talent and preparation.”–Malcolm Gladwell
Persistence, a key factor for creative genius
Practice is not what someone does when they are already good at a field. This is the practice that makes us good in a discipline. To understand this point we project another way towards the future. For example, we have always been told that Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart has been a musical genius from birth.
We know that he was already playing the violin and the harpsichord at age four, that he composed small pieces at five, and that at six, European society already defined it as a miracle full of talent. However, even though his natural gifts for music were obvious, we forget that little Mozart repeated between five and six hours a day. We also forget that his father, Leopold Mozart, has abandoned much of his responsibilities to deal exclusively with his son’s musical education.
Jonathan Plucker, an educational psychologist at Johns Hopkins University, reports in various studies that symphonies do not appear in Mozart’s head from one day to the next . The analysis of his notebooks showed that this work took him months and required long hours of work, during which he refined the scores until reaching the genius we all admire.
Persistence builds talent
Carol S. Dweck, a psychology professor at Stanford, tells us that many of the most illustrious geniuses, whether present or historical, were normal people in their childhood. In other words, they were not necessarily profiles with extraordinary talents or with a very high intelligence quotient.
It is the persistence that determined the mastery of Monet or Cezanne. And it is the motivation that led Darwin or Freud to state their theories or approaches. Skill comes with practice and day-to-day work, one that often goes unnoticed by others but gives shape to talent and recognition in one area.
Talent and character
The writings of Confucius already pointed out that people could reach perfection through practice and effort. To achieve this also depends on our character and our personality. In books like The Hypomanic Edge, psychiatrist John Gartner tells us that, in general, these geniuses who have exceptional talent and stand out through persistence also have very concrete traits:
- They accept the challenges
- They are persevering, are not afraid of failure and learn from their mistakes
- The psychological boldness is part of their strengths
- They use intrinsic motivation. They are able to fuel their persistence even when their environment is not favorable
Finally, we must take another aspect into consideration. To achieve success or stand out in a discipline, natural talent helps. Persistence determines and is essential. Nevertheless, if we take personality factors into account, we must also show courage to overcome difficulties.
A courage that is based on self-esteem and that helps us to move forward in a society often unpredictable, contradictory, who does not often appreciate the real talent. This is not easy and can not be done in a day. So we need to train that exceptional muscle that is courage, honest commitment to ourselves.