As I type this, I’m listening to a friend’s first studio recording and I am floored.
In one of her songs, she confesses that singing is her true passion but she was told as a child that singing is for stupid people. Smart people study medicine, engineering, or law; so she hid her talent for more than twenty years. Yes, you read that correctly—two decades of buying into a lie. I don’t know about you, but if i could sing, I’d love to be one of those “stupid” people that gross fifty grand just for showing up to work.
While one side of my brain is screaming “sacrilege”, the other half is calling me a hypocrite for judging her. I cannot sit on my white horse and chastise anyone for not reveling in their talents, but how can I not challenge you to see to it that you don’t make the same mistake? How can I not remind you that you only get one shot at life?
First Things First
Have you ever wondered how it would feel to reach the age of 70, look back on life and be full of regret? At the end of the day, you will realize that peoples’ opinions aren’t worth very much after all. No matter what you tell yourself, you have at least one talent. Until you use that talent, develop it and become a master in your craft, you may never find the rest of the potential that lies in you.
Steve Jobs once said that “remembering that you are going to die is the best way of avoiding the trap of thinking that you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.”
Last but Not Least
Let me make this simple for you: if you think you are good at something. If you think you care about a profession, a cause, a person, a lifestyle, anything praiseworthy, go for it. At best you’ll surprise yourself and at worst, you’ll find out what you really suck at. How do you think i found out that I croak when i try to sing in public?
Stop thinking so hard about all the stuff that could go wrong. Forget about what people will say/think. Just.do.it. Once you take that first step, you will be amazed by the volume of useful resources you never noticed before. A golden opportunity is like a pin in a pack of needles; you will never find it if you’re not looking.
For what it’s worth, this post is a memoir to myself as much as it is a loving kick in the shin for many of you.