I enjoy meeting and talking to people with talent. If you’ve read my book or heard me speak, you could say, “Now wait a minute, I thought you said we all have talents…” True, very true, but it’s also true that some actively use their talents more and are willing to share them. This keeps their skills sharp, relevant and helpful to others. These people motivate me and, at times, even convict me to keep at my own creative pursuits. I’m amazed by how quickly life distracts me; only to find it’s been weeks, months, or even years since I’ve used some of my creative outlets. How about you? Have you let your gifts slip away because of a busy schedule? Or for that matter, it could be any variety of reasons; one being that you’re simply too tired after a long day at work. I feel that way at times. Keep in mind when it comes to talents, use it or lose it.
You might want to take a moment to identify “what” hinders you so you can get back to “why” you created in the first place. It’s when we’re not mindful of our loss, or we no longer miss the benefits of actively participating in our creative outlet that complacency sets in. Then it’s hard to get back to using our talents on a regular basis.
The adage, “Use it or lose it” is unfortunately true. It took me several years to complete my book, Created to be Creative. One reason for this was that I needed to learn how to write. By the last few chapters, my editor made very few changes because I had grown in my ability as a writer. My book came out in December of 2006 and regrettably, I have hardly written anything since. Now that I’ve started this blog it’s forcing me to write and I admit, it’s hard right now for me to communicate my thoughts in a fluent and clear manner. My lack of time spent writing has caused my skill to diminish and even though I’ve published a book, that fact alone doesn’t guarantee future success. Now I have to rewrite clumsy sentences, take extra care to make sure my concepts are clear, and work through my frustrations with how long it takes to complete a blog. Practice does make the process easier, even if it’s not as quick or as perfect as I would like.
Gifts and talents are not fail-proof once developed. They must be performed on a regular basis to flow with ease and remain top notch. Think of it in terms of learning a foreign language. Those who are fluent in more than one language have a reason to use it on a regular basis. When there is no fixed need to speak the second language, it’s eventually forgotten. Yes, it will be easier for the one who knew the language to relearn it over someone starting fresh; however, it will still take extra time and effort for it to become easy again. It’s always better, if possible, to maintain a talent than having to start over and, in some cases, over and over.
I know this to be true, because I’ve started six different paintings over the last two years and have completed none of them. My lack of painting has caused each new attempt to look so amateurish that I quit. And just because I have several quality pieces of art doesn’t guarantee another one. My husband’s always telling me, “Arleen, you need to practice, stop starting with a major project and expecting great results.” He’s right, I need to get back to my studio and be willing to begin with simple washes and brush strokes. Practicing will restore my skills and eventually I’ll do a new painting worthy of wall space.
Thanks to all of you who actively use and share your talents. You motivate me. You push me to action. In time, my gifts revived, will also make a difference in the lives of others.
I’m the author of: Created to be Creative
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