But guess what. It doesn’t really matter.
Because “hard work beats talent when talent fails to work hard”.
Even Kevin Durant, the freakishly tall, amazingly kind basketball star knows that being tall doesn’t mean you’ll be a great player. Kevin worked hard all through high school to play with the best. He knew being tall didn’t mean he’d be able to make three-pointers with ease. Unless he worked at them.
Because he’s known the value of that hard work since his earliest days on the court, he worked his grind to become a 4x NBA Scoring Champion. And he didn’t get there because his grandma recognized being tall was a blessing.
He got there because he was on the court day after day. He got there because, even though he had to pick himself up off the floor more times than he shot his rookie year, he struggled to get the ball and take shot after shot at that hoop.
Kevin Durant is the epitome of guy that knows the meaning of hard work, regardless of his level of talent. And his success proves it
Talent Is Never Enough
You can have the greatest ability in the world (which is inarguably the ability to speak foreign tongues), but if you don’t work with that talent, you’ll go approximately nowhere.
On the flip side of that coin, you can have almost zero talent (just to be realistic here since everyone has SOME kind of talent, even if it’s tying your shoes with your tongue – can I just say “ew”?), yet you can still make enough to live in that penthouse in New York City that you always dreamed of. You know, the one that overlooks the harbor and is completely furnished in black leather? And you can still have that 2015 Jaguar XJ parked in the parking garage of said penthouse.
ONLY if you work.
Talent is awesome and it makes the work a little less, well, stressful, BUT you still have to work at it. You still have to hustle. You still have to work the grind.
Work the Grind
When you get out of bed, you can’t worry what your competition is doing or your neighbor or the guy from your your fraternity. You can lie to yourself and say that you’re only “checking” to see if they’re failing or succeeding. Because what you’re doing is 1) wasting precious moments of productivity, 2) disrupting your own creativity by allowing them to influence you, 3) doubting your own skill-set.
Talent or no talent, you have to spend your time wisely. Focused. You have to know where you’re headed and take the steps necessary to get there.
Success doesn’t create itself. Your time has to be spent creating it. If you really want it.
Create Your Success
Success comes from clawing and scratching your way through the mire, through the muck. It’s created by fighting harder than the other guys fight. It’s created by standing back and asking yourself, “What’s the next step?” Then doing it. Regardless of what’s in your face.
Because there will always be crap in your face. There will always be a reason to not plow forward. But you can’t stop because you have the blues or because your significant other has decided you’re just not enough for her. You have to block out the world. You have to maintain that tunnel vision.
When it’s all said and done? She didn’t matter anyway. Your new best friend? The words: So what? Because when So What is on the top of your head, you’ll not look back at those 1001 dates where she made you laugh. You’ll not look back at 6 months you spent as the Top Performer in your company and wonder why you’re not there anymore. You’ll eat the crow you need to eat to make your own success.
Because so what if you weren’t born with the talent your competition has? It’s YOU who will go farther because YOU are the one busting you’re ass day after day.
And if you’re an entrepreneur? That is the ONLY way you’re going to succeed.
Sure, you can get out of bed each day and approach your goals half-assed. Get in line bro… You can approach your million dollar dream with a minimum wage work ethic. But that’s all you’re going to get out of it: minimum wage.
Winning, succeeding, ONLY comes when you decide to single-handedly take on your goals, one-by-one. And doing the WORK to make them happen. Regardless of whether or not you hit the talent lottery.