We’re All Good at Something
Finding it is only half the problem…
You are talented. You have a unique ability that many others do not. You can do this “thing” that makes others look over their shoulders at you in semi-jealousy or perhaps fascinated interest. What do you do that works with your innate, born-with ability? Yes, we all have to find it first, and that’s just the start.
I often look at the Joshua Bell’s or the Misty Copeland’s in the world and wonder how lucky they were to find their talent. What if Joshua had been forced into playing baseball rather than the violin? What is Misty had been forbidden to dance and had been told she would be doomed to a life of piano practice? Finding our gift or gifts is just the beginning, but what a joy it is to find ourselves good at something. Really good. Have you found it yet?
I often think it’s in high school where some of us dare to try many things that sets us on our way, because we sort of fall into realizing art comes easily or our creative writing teacher loves our work. Yes, it’s fortuitous if we find our skills earlier, for then we can hone our talent and join the best of the best; but maybe finding ourselves later is a blessing. We might find ourselves getting great grades, or that we read at a much higher level than others or have a mind for higher mathematics.
I discovered how much of a “gifted” intellect one of my daughters possessed when she noticed things I never even pondered. The way a clock always adds up to twelve. She said it so calmly at age five, noting that when both hands on the clock were stuck at twelve, that was the first twelve in the sequence. Then came one and eleven. Two and ten. Three o’clock and nine o’clock opposed one another, and they also added up to twelve. I never thought about it before that day.
This daughter sees more four leaf clovers than anyone except a leprechaun perhaps. On walks she’ll easily spot more than one. Her husband finds it mysterious, and I’m still jealous, waiting to find my first one; and she placidly remarks that it’s just seeing the break in a pattern. From a fast walk? Seriously? So she has a good brain, and she puts it to excellent use saving people from dying at a great hospital.
You may have the ability to take fabulous photographs that make people stand still, marveling at their beauty or wondering how you ever saw a bridge that way. Some might cook, easily and happily adding their own touches to recipes and finding they are excellent chefs. Others nurture, and that is a skill that is overlooked in the me-centric world we currently inhabit, but it’s one of the best gifts to possess. Wisdom. Ah, that might be the best of all, but even Solomon fell in his old age, and he possessed wisdom beyond all people. So maybe wisdom is best used with a handful of humility, which is also underrated these days.
You might be one of the best at something you don’t really like, but what if our world needs you to do it anyway? What about writing? What if your take on the world is so different and beautiful, that if you don’t take a pen to paper the world will be a starker place? Maybe you need to teach others how to swim. You might save a life. Or show them how to keep their bodies in shape through exercise class? We need so many people who are good at what they do.
And even if you never find the one thing you are best at, as I believe most of us do, yours and my striving to work with what we know is a wonder. Keep casting about for your talents, since I believe they change with age. Running might have been your thing when your body was new and unhindered with age, so now it might be time to switch it up. Maybe it’s time to try knitting, woodworking, or mentoring others. You have something to add to this world, to your family, and to you.
It’s said that we’ve found our passion when we’re so engrossed in an activity that we lose all sense of time. Find that if you haven’t already. It’s waiting for you, and even if our gifts don’t register on a global scale, they will resonate with those in your world. What better legacy is there than someone saying you were nice, kind and giving? Maybe that’s one of the best gifts to give this hurried, harried and hurting world. Be one of the kindest people in your world. Do that. You’ll be remembered long into the future for that skill alone.
Have fun finding you.