“Black and white shot of a female ballet dancer in a split in midair as sun shines in the distance” by Gabriel Sanchez on Unsplash

I have several small talents, maybe you do too. Maybe you have a head for numbers, can balance on the head of a pin, spin gold with a silver tongue, or pipe out something pretty from the pipes we’re all born with. Whatever your advantages are, people will notice when they see them- and when they talk about them you’ll probably feel a swell of pride in your chest. I wouldn’t start bragging just yet.

Maybe you didn’t get any specific advantages. Maybe the lack of advantages is something you’ve already capitalized on. You know the value of work.

The thing is- in life, we’re all in a thousand different competitions together, all at once. Just because we have an advantage doesn’t mean we’re guaranteed a win. Sometimes, the talent is what trips you up. Talented people are the hare in their little race, but everybody else is the tortoise.

Your talent is a head start. You still need to run.

Just don’t be Wiley. Coyotes never win and Acme makes crap rockets.

“The macro view of the eyes and mouth of a timber wolf in Museo del Desierto” by Priss Enriquez on Unsplash

Even if you won the talent lottery and you’re the most talented person on the planet- I’ve got news for you. Talent is a shitty excuse for experience.

There will always be someone better, older, wiser, stronger, faster, or more skilled than you. No matter how high you climb or how fast you run, there will be someone there waiting with a smile for the plucky little upstart.

Now, don’t get discouraged. Having some company at the top isn’t a bad thing. The road goes on forever, but you can stop anywhere you like. Are you tired of running? Tired of constantly pushing? Bored of the race? Ready to retire? Stop. Put up your feet, let that star fade and quit while you’re ahead. Nobody gets to plant your goal posts but you.

The terrifying and awesome thing is when you get exactly what you’ve been pushing for all along, and you’ve broken entirely new ground. What new terrors and special wonders will you find there?

There’s only one way to find out… start running. Only quit when you’re done, and don’t let your talents trip you.

Photo by Justyn Warner on Unsplash

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A modern witch and lunatic skeptic. Spinning webs and bleeding ink to scratch out wonderous tales with teeth. Writer.Garrett.Copeland@gmail.com