Use those talents you have. You will make it. You will give joy to the world. Take this tip from nature: The woods would be a very silent place if no birds sang except those who sang best. – Bernard Meltzer
Have you ever known someone who’s really wonderful – gifted and incredibly talented, but never rising up to her obvious potential? Despite all her gifts, she seems to focus on her shortcomings. Sure, she has faults, but she seems to focus on those more than on her gifts. And her amazing qualities and gifts lie almost dormant, not being used fully, the bird not singing her song.
Are YOU that person? Do you tend to focus on your shortcomings? It’s an easy trap to fall into. Every day, we’re bombarded with subtle (and not-so-subtle) messages that we’re not good enough – that we need something more – whiter teeth, fresher breath, the next new gadget. And, we need this product or that service to get the job, the guy, the attention.
What if, instead, you focused more of your attention on the gifts that you’ve been given? If you honored them and honed them and paid a lot less attention to those shortcomings. If you sang your song – even if it wasn’t the most beautiful in the forest. What if you sang your heart out and worked to improve your gifts and talents to be YOUR very best?
A winner is someone who recognizes his God-given talents, works his tail off to develop them into skills, and uses these skills to accomplish his goals. – Larry Bird
And you can sing YOUR tune – use your talents and define your own ideals rather than be boxed in by the expectations and ideals of others. Sheryl Sandberg, COO of FaceBook writes,
“We can each define ambition and progress for ourselves. The goal is to work toward a world where expectations are not set by the stereotypes that hold us back, but by our personal passion, talents and interests.”
Of course, there may be naysayers (there usually are), but if you’re singing your heart out, giving it the best you’ve got, and acknowledging yourself for doing so, you’ve won!
What ARE your God-given gifts and talents? What things come easily to you and give you joy? Are you an artist, singer, performer? Do you love to cook? Do you have an eye for design? Are you the person people reach out to when they’re hurting? Are you a problem solver?
It’s important to take some time to do some honest self-appraisal and say “YES!” to the gifts you’ve been given. It’s not the time to be overly-modest, which is not honoring God’s gift. Acknowledge your gifts and see where they can be used.
Your talents are God’s gift to you; what you do with them is your gift to God.
Don’t spend so much time dwelling on your shortcomings, on why you can’t do something or worrying about not being ready. You may never feel ready or good enough. But you’ll never feel the joy of accomplishment if you don’t give it a shot.
Here’s an example of a young woman using her gifts, despite the odds: