It was just recently that I did a motivational speech to a group of 16-17 year olds and I asked the question, ‘who here can tell me what their talents are or what they are skilled at?!’ The question was returned with a deathly silence. Not one student was able to tell me a talent or skill that they possessed. I thought to myself, maybe this is due to shyness so I pressed on with the speech and asked other questions to which I got a much better response so I thought to ask the original question again, ‘What are your talents and skills?’ Again, nothing. I pressed them further and asked whether due to the fact that some of them studied I.T. they would say they were skilled in I.T. And again, you guessed it, nothing 😦 Now either this is an example of the fact that our young people are not confident and proud enough of their skills and talents in order to share them or we have young people who are not even aware of what their talents and skills are! Either way, we have a problem considering these young people are our future leaders!
So, this got me to thinking about how important it is to know what your talents, skills and gifts are and once this has been acknowledged, how important it is to nurture, develop and master them. Because in doing so, you will ultimately be living in purpose. And when living in purpose, you will face no resistance to what is and life will flow easily and naturally.
The vital aspect is knowing what your talents and gifts are. And by this I mean, knowing deep down that you are a talented singer, fashion designer, actress, business man, footballer etc and not just doing it because all your friends are, or because it’s the cool thing to do or because your family want for you to do it. Don’t chase after something that is not yours to chase because you will only end up falling on your face (Ha! I’m a poet and I so know it!!! :p) You were created uniquely so don’t be a follower. Be you. Be ‘younique’. And be proud.
Let me give you an example. Now as you may be aware, I am a massive X Factor fan. This programme gives me a great amount of pleasure to watch but is also a good example of people chasing after gifts that they do not possess in order to be famous or gratified in some way. You shouldn’t have to chase after your gift. Your gift is inside you ready for you to access and once you have accessed it, therein lies your treasure. The people who go on this show who are not necessarily very talented in singing may have gifts that lie in finance, artistry, hospitality, administration or teaching but due to resisting these gifts and wanting other gifts they do not find success. So, the key here is to accept your gifts no matter what they are and be proud of them as it is your gifts that make you successful; your gifts that will bring you riches and your gifts that will allow for you to live a happy, purposeful life. Therefore, accepting what is, is key.
This reminds me of the story of the two young boys who were playing with rocks in the desert when some explorers came and offered the boys some candy for the rocks they were playing with. The boys happily exchanged their rocks only to realise that the rocks they were playing with were in fact diamonds!
This is why it is so vital for you to know what your gifts are so that they you don’t give them away without realising it. Your gifts could lie in writing, playing a musical instrument, your wisdom, your organisation, your voice, your knowledge or your leadership. Once you are aware of them master them and focus on them and don’t waste your time on things that your strengths do not lie in.
What is even worse than not being aware of your talents and your gifts is being aware of them and then not acting on them! This is such a shame! A gift & talent without action is a gift & talent not worth you having. It’s like having lots of pretty clothes in your cupboard but only wearing the same pair of jeans and jumper each and every day. Or having thousands of pounds in the bank but spending like a miser. Or having lots of delicious food in your cupboards but eating Pot Noodle every night! Don’t keep your talents and gifts inside the box. You have been given these talents in order to share them with the world and by hiding them away, you are not doing yourself any favours and denying us the benefits. Russell Simmons was quoted as saying,
“Your purpose is to act on the resources God gives you. If God gives you a bucket of fish, you have to distribute those fish. If you don’t, they’re going to rot, attract a bunch of flies, and start stinking up your soul.”
I couldn’t have put it better myself! Furthermore, If you don’t do so, then someone with a similar talent will just come along and reap all the rewards you yourself could have had. Your talents won’t be taken away if you don’t use them. Oh no! Someone else will just benefit from them instead of you! Now if that isn’t incentive to take action I don’t know what is!
Abraham Maslow said, “What one can be, one must be” And he’s right. You have been created with a specific purpose in mind and to resist this is to cause yourself suffering and pain. To accept this is to accept what is and doors of opportunity will be opened for you and life will flow as it is meant to.
The reason I am able to say all this with ease, confidence and clarity is because I am living proof that once you become aware of your gifts and live in purpose, life falls into place. 3 months ago I became aware that my unwavering faith, my writing skills and my encouraging character were in fact gifts that I had been blessed with. Once I realised this and became confident and sure in them, I put them into action and the result of this is the fact that I now write a successful blog, am a motivational speaker to young people, which uses my public speaking skills as well as my passion of empowerment and am a mentor to young people in London. And my faith in the knowledge that I would be a success and positive things would come to me has allowed for this to happen. I never once gave up. I always believed in the fact that I was going to make it one day and once I realised my gifts and my purpose, this all came naturally.
So the message of this blog is clear. Work out what your gifts are. And be honest and true to yourself with them. Accept them and yourself for what they are and know that it is these gifts that will bring you your fortunes. Don’t be chasing after gifts that are not yours and therefore being a Jack of all Trades & a Master of None. And once you are aware of your gifts, take action because as Jesus once said,
“If you bring forth what is inside you, what you bring forth will save you. If you don’t bring forth what is inside you, what you don’t bring forth will destroy you.”