“Talent is cheap; dedication is costly.” It’s said to be a remark by an Italian art teacher to the great Michaelangelo very early in his career (see more at https://bible.org/illustration/talent-cheap-dedication-costly). I first heard this phrase a few months ago when my pastor used it in a sermon.
And I’ve been thinking about it on and off since. What does that mean exactly?
I believe we all have talent in one form or another. Sometimes, we don’t appreciate our talents – or even recognize them. And sometimes, we squander our talents by not using them at all. Identifying our talents and putting them to their best use may mean making a few mistakes along the way (and learning from them).
That’s where fear comes in — fear may get in the way of using our talent. We don’t want to fail; we fear criticism; we feel our talents aren’t “good enough.” That’s what I think the quote is about … honing, practicing, refining, improving, and cultivating our talent. Taking the risk to fully embrace our talent and use it could mean overcoming fear. Getting past that fear is an endeavor that’s good for us, for others, and possibly, for the world.
I have said it more than once to people who ask “what do you do.” I’m one of the lucky people who always knew “what I wanted to be.” A writer, a journalist, a communicator, a media pitching guru, and a storyteller. In other words, I was fortunate enough to recognize my talents and have the opportunities to put them to use. And I LOVE what I do.
But I am reminded that I must never stop developing my talent. The communications world has changed vastly since I graduated from college. Press releases are no longer mailed (or even faxed); social media didn’t even exist; reading newspapers online was not an option; CNN was just getting started.
I’ve met and become friends with many communications professionals over the years. They are very talented individuals, but sometimes they have felt their talents aren’t appreciated … by their boss, their client, their peers. Or they may feel that they haven’t kept up with all the changes in our industry and are being held back from career opportunities.
If you are a communications professional who is looking to leverage your talent to advance your career, grow as a professional or identify your goals, perhaps you can benefit from someone who has “been there.” Or maybe you just want to love your career even more.
Want to know more? Drop me a line and let me know!