You Don’t Have to be a Genius to be Amazing

24 Aug

“Why are we so impressed by prodigies and geniuses? It’s easy to do well at something that comes easily to you. The people I admire are the ones who achieve mastery of their skill by investing a tremendous amount of time, diligence, practice, failure, hard work, and persistence.
There is a genius inside all of us waiting to emerge.”

From Start Your Week with Steve — the free weekly e-mail newsletter of Steve Henderson Fine Art, designed to help you jump start your work week on a positive note.

There’s no short cut to hard work. Even Einstein, whom most of us would acknowledge as a genius in some areas (apparently, for real life stuff, he depended upon regular, ordinary people like family members),  would acknowledge that success in anything involves a lot of time, perseverance  determination, imagination, grit, and plain old fashioned stubbornness. A mule may be an ass, but it does make its point.

The good news about this is that — while we may not be blessed with prodigy-level accomplishments — we have all been given the same 24 hours in each day, and how we choose to use those hours — after work, commute, meal preparation, family obligations, it does go on — is up to us.

How good we get at anything depends hugely upon how much of this time and effort we put into it — learning the basics, practicing what we’ve learned, building upon that practice, moving forward in our abilities, admitting that we don’t know everything, curbing our arrogance and cultivating a sense of humility.

Obviously, this also means that we must make choices — increasing painting time comes at the expense of decreasing time elsewhere. It is best that the time from elsewhere is not taken from the people who mean the most to us — our children, our spouses, our family. Time spent there is well invested, and pays off in what comes to our canvas from the depths of our soul. But there are other things — we all can identify them — that steal an hour here, and evening there — and while they may be beneficial, they may not be necessary right now.

You don’t have to be a genius to be amazing. You just have to be willing to work hard.


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