Where Talent meets Change
We’re all born with talents, or natural abilities. Our talents manifest themselves in a variety of ways. Musicians, actors, vocalists, and poets are among those with talents in the arts. Physicians, surgeons, and nurses possess a talent for healing or care giving. Scientists and inventors have a gift for discovery. Architects and engineers are changing the face of our world every day. Computer gurus are introducing new technologies faster than we can implement them! The list of talents possessed by individuals goes on and on. An attempt at recounting all of these abilities would surely result in my omission of one or more, which would result in someone being offended, so I won’t even try. I think you get the point: We all have unique abilities.
Some of us (child prodigies) recognize these talents at a very early age. Some of us recognize our talents during our formative teen years, or even during our adult life. Sadly enough, there are those that never recognize their abilities, never recognize those gifts that they possess when they come into this world. What a shame. What a loss, for these individuals. What a loss for all of us.
Even more tragic are those of us who recognize our talents, but never use them. Why does this happen? Why would someone not use a talent, a gift, an ability, that would serve to make his life better?
The answer lies in what I like to call the ‘intersection’ of talent and change.
Picture if you will, Talent Street. Talent Street is a quiet, tree shaded, two-lane street; what you might find in an established, well-kept neighborhood. There are no turns, ‘blind spots’, or obstacles. In fact, you can stand at one end of Talent Street and see as far as your eyes are able. Any destination that you have is clearly defined and easily reached.
Now imagine this: Talent Street represents the path of your life. It is the path that you believe is yours to take, to be who you are supposed to be, to do whatever in life that you are supposed to do. The path begins where you are standing at this moment. Your destination is the other end of Talent Street. Your ‘purpose in life’ can be seen as traveling from one end of Talent Street to the other, using the gifts that you have been given. All things considered, this should be a walk in the park, right?
Well, as with most things that are too good to be true, there’s a catch: You see, to get from one end of Talent Street to the other, you must cross Change Avenue. Change Avenue is four lanes wide and filled with bumper-to-bumper traffic traveling at unbelievable speeds. The mere thought of crossing this road strikes fear in the hardiest of souls!
Lets’ take a moment to talk about this traffic on Change Avenue: better yet, let’s put this analogy aside for a moment. I want to focus on the real world, and the obstacles that we encounter attempting to move forward in life; the mental challenges that we face every day in trying to live out our life’s purpose.
Think about the sparkle that you see when you look into the eyes of a healthy infant, or a toddler’s smile that lights up a room, or the look of innocence on the face of a four year old. Do you know what that is?
That sparkle, that smile, that look of innocence is absolute, unadulterated joy. Each may rekindle feelings in us that we had long ago, feelings that we’ve lost along the way, feelings that we’d love to experience at least one more time. Some of us would give anything to share even a bit of that joy.
So why are these little ones so happy?
They don’t know any better!
You see, when we’re born, we don’t know anger, aggression, or hatred. We don’t know doubt, fear, or limitations. We don’t know unworthiness, guilt, or envy. We don’t know ‘not being good enough’. We don’t know that we can say the wrong thing; give the wrong answer to a question. We don’t know prejudice. We don’t know any negative emotion! All we feel when we enter this world is happiness; all we know is love.
So what goes wrong? How do we go from happiness and love to how we are? What happens to us?
People happen to us! People that love us. People that hate us. People that want to help us. People that want to hold us back. People that don’t even know us.
Who are these people? Parents. Siblings. Friends. Educators. Guidance counselors. Competitors. Strangers.
It’s easy to understand why competitors and strangers would try to retard our growth: they want what we have. Either they don’t have enough of it, or they don’t have it at all. Perhaps they don’t have the ambition to get it, or they don’t have the ability to get it. Maybe they don’t feel that they are worthy of it. Some may think that it is only reserved for others.
So exactly what is this it, and why is it missing in their lives? Perhaps of more importance is why it may be missing from your life?
It, quite simply, may be defined as something that you’ve wanted in life but never had. It may be something tangible, like a new sports car, a fancy home, a boat, or a huge sum of money in the bank. It may be an intangible, like confidence, self esteem, love, hope, or peace of mind. Each of us has our own it, or better yet, a list of its.
I’ll remind you that the name of this site is The Seed of Hope. My aim is to plant a positive seed of hope in you that will replace the negative seeds that have been sown in your mind since birth. Seeds like:
“What made you think you could do that? You’re not good enough. I think you should choose a career for which you are more suited. Are you out of your mind? You have got to be kidding me! You’re wasting your time. Why can’t you be like your sister? What on earth were you thinking?”
All of the above question our abilities, set limitations, and plant seeds of doubt that we carry for the rest of our lives! These doubts become mental barriers that keep us from believing that we’re good enough, that we have the abilities, that, well, that we can do anything! We already have what we need to cross Change Avenue; we just don’t know it!
How do we do this? How do we undo what has been done? How do we unlearn what we believe to be true? How do we uproot all that is keeping us from moving forward, and in turn sow the seeds for a new life?
Make a commitment to yourself to use the natural gifts and abilities you’ve been given to move forward in life. I don’t mean a promise, a pledge, or even an oath. I’m talking about an absolute, know-it-in-your-soul, unwavering, unbending, never gonna quit commitment to yourself. Make this commitment as though your life depended on it. If you’ve never known happiness, contentment, or satisfaction, maybe your life does depend on it. Think about this for a moment; there’s a chance that the only thing standing between you and the life you want to live is your commitment to make it happen!
Ask for help.
If you walk with faith, turn to that faith for the strength and wisdom that you will need on your journey. Hold tight to the belief that with God, all things are possible. Don’t be afraid to tell God what you’d like to have in your life, and don’t be afraid to ask Him to help you along the way. It is God’s will for us to live in abundance (remember that abundance comes in many forms); if what you are seeking is pure and just, He may be waiting for you to simply ask.
If faith is absent in your life, turn to a trusted friend, someone with whom you feel comfortable in sharing. Seek the help of your spouse or partner; make them aware of your intentions. People that love and care for you will help you any way they can to live a better life. Do not let your pride stand between you and happiness; ask for help.
Channel all the energy and strength that you’ve used for years to survive in this world, and use it instead to make your world what you want it to be. Close your eyes, take a deep breath, and make that unwavering commitment to cross Change Avenue. Know going in that it won’t be easy. There will be challenges at every turn; life is that way. Do not, even for a minute, take your eyes off of your ultimate destination: the end of Talent Street.
There awaits your “purpose”. There awaits a sense of fulfillment, and a feeling greater than anything that you have ever known.
There, at the end of Talent Street, awaits your destiny.
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