Book Review: Talent Is Overrated – What Really Separates World-Class Performers From Everybody Else by Geoff Colvin

TalentIsOverrated
TheBreakaway | BreakawayConciousness
Zy Marquiez
April 14, 2017

Talent Is Overrated – What Really Separates World-Class Performers From Everybody Else by Geoff Colvin is a discerning book that aims to home in on the salient differences between the very top tiers of individuals in a variety of fields and the rest.  With a rather unorthodox approach, the author poses a new theory about why so many individuals are great,  and what got them there.

Colvin delves into why Ben Franklin, Tiger Woods, The Polgar Sisters, Jerry Rice, and many others rose to become the crème of the crop.  Gleaning from them, the author also shows how individuals can finetune their personal repertoire to gain insights and learn to practice in similar fashion.

In his quest for answers within abstruse subject, the author samples various disciplines in society in his effort to get to the bottom of what ‘talent’ really means given all the talk about it.

Colvin does an reasonable job of arguing the case for deliberate practice and other ideas.  Be that as it may, the book could have used some more scientific evidence or studies referenced just to bolster the argument and bring more fuel to the fire.

Irrespective of that, though, the matter talent might boil down to the individual and their inherent mental faculties and the beliefs they themselves hold.

As the author ponders in his own words:

“What do you believe?  Do you believe that you have a choice in the matter?  Do you believe that if you do the work, properly designed, with intense focus for hours a day and years on end, your performance will grow dramatically better and eventually reach the highest levels?  If you believe that, then there’s at least a chance you will do the work and achieve great performance.

“But if you believe that your performance is forever limited by your lack of a specific innate gift, or by a lack of general abilities at the level that you think must be necessary, then there’s no chance at all that you will do the work.

“That’s why this belief is tragically constraining.  Everyone who achieved exceptional performance has encountered terrible difficulties along the way.  There are no exceptions.  If you believe that doing the right kind of work can overcome the problems, then you have at least chance of moving on to ever better performance. “[1]

That’s what most people want, a chance, an opportunity.  And why wouldn’t that opportunity be there for the taking?  It’s merely a choice.

For those that might wonder if people are really born with talent,  Colvin elucidates:

“…a hundred years later, abundant evidence showed clearly that people can keep getting better long after they should have reached their “rigidly determinate” natural limits.  The examples were not just great writers, artists, business people, inventors, and other eminences producing their best work three or four decades into their careers.  By the late nineteenth century, scientific research was showing repeatedly that ordinary people in various lines of work could keep getting better even after their performance had apparently plateau.  Typists, telegraph operators, typesetters – highly experienced workers in all these jobs, whose performance hadn’t improved in years, suddenly got markedly better when they were offered incentives or given new kinds of training.  This evidence was obviously a big problem for the you’ve-got-it-or-you-don’t point of view.”[2]

Such data is actually quite refreshing, because it shows that this is not merely an issue of being born with talent.  On the flip side, it is also not as simple as merely working hard, because most people work hard.  The main takeaway is that as long as proper practice is designed and undertaken, progress and growth can be developed in countless professions.

Given all the data collated that shows how certain individuals became extraordinary, the information presented by the author is worth ruminating upon at length.  And seeing as Colvin also gave individuals a jump-off point, the book does hold a lot of significance one way or another.

If you wish to read a book that offers value, ideas to ruminate upon which might just change your life, and also want to know what separates the top tier from all the rest,  get this book.

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Sources:

[1] Geoff Colvin, Talent Is Overrated – What Really Separates World-Class Performers From Everybody Else, p. 205.
[2] Ibid., p. 63.
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This article is free and open source. You are encouraged and have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Zy Marquiez and TheBreakaway.wordpress.com.
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About The Author:

Zy Marquiez is an avid book reviewer, researcher, an open-minded skeptic, yogi, humanitarian, and freelance writer who studies and mirrors regularly subjects like Consciousness, Education, Creativity, The Individual, Ancient History & Ancient Civilizations, Forbidden Archaeology, Big Pharma, Alternative Health, Space, Geoengineering, Social Engineering, Propaganda, and much more.

His own personal blog is BreakawayConsciousnessBlog.wordpress.com where his personal work is shared, while TheBreakaway.wordpress.com serves as a media portal which mirrors vital information usually ignored by mainstream press, but still highly crucial to our individual understanding of various facets of the world.

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Imagination Rises Out Of The Jaws Of Defeat

Imagination&Obstacles
TheBreakaway
| BreakawayConciousness
Zy Marquiez
March 14, 2017

“Imagination should be used, not to escape reality, but to create it.”
– Collin Wilson

“Imagination is more important than knowledge.  For knowledge is limited to all we know and understand, while imagination embraces the entire word, and all there ever will be to know and understand.”
– Einstein

Imagination is the skeleton key to life, for it opens all the doors that allow the individual to venture through all of the possible roads of life.  Having the option to venture upon the unknown to travel the roaring roads of life allows the individual not only to become more cognizant through life experience and learn from such ventures, but also to employ imagination in order to seek and attain mastery of the self.  This allows the individual the ability to live life to the fullest extent.

This is why it’s vital to respect the creative consciousness of the individual, because there is no path imagination won’t venture upon, there is no solution that can’t be attained by the open-minded skeptical individual who ceaselessly seeks to attain understanding through constant employing of the triumvirate that is the heart, mind, and spirit.

As imagination is employed boundlessly, a more thorough understanding of life is achieved with the acquisition of experience and wisdom each new day brings forth.  This serves as further impetus for the individual as they continue to seek new untapped ground to learn from while also exploring the conscious streams of life, because they realize with each new set of experiences, new possibilities arise, new solutions are to be had.

Regardless of the path one takes, with each new obstacle that arises, the individual grows further with each new choice made.  The more one grows, the more capable one feels.  The more capable one feels, the more they accomplish.  And the more they accomplish, the more they grow.  Therefore, growth serves as a catalyst for additional growth and experience, which is all fueled by endless inspiration of being able to tackle any problem that arises with the employment of imagination.

This is why imagination and creativity will continue to serve as an engine of growth by which the individual evolves, ultimately raising their quality of consciousness with each new well thought out and pondered idea that is ruminated upon deeply.  This growth undoubtedly couples to the life lessons that help us persevere through life doggedly, while also serving as sparks that ignite the embers of creativity.

As individuals embrace the resonant feeling of inspiration and creativity that follow the use of imagination and how those spawn new streams of consciousness and possibilities, they realize that imagination is the one tool in life that cannot be overlooked.  Without imagination, one cannot achieve anything.

And when imagination and inspiration couple, there is no end in sight to the type of accomplishments an individual may unleash.

New ideas arise, old shackles melt, and imagination becomes the key to a healthy and fulfilling life.

The precious and vast streams of consciousness that abound us are the canvas upon which imagination artfully creates its dreams – the individual’s dream.

In fact, writer, philosopher and naturalist Henry David Thoreau once intimated saliently:

“This world is but canvas to our imaginations.”

Humanity is here to create, and individuals cannot create without imagination.

Imagination leads to dreams, and dreams lead individuals to change one’s life; dreams help individuals inspire others; dreams have also throughout history helped change the course of civilization.  All of these dreams that are inherently woven within the core of our being, and are entwined within the web of life serve to vault the pallid, mediocre, and dull components of life into a completely different constellation of possibilities altogether.

Individuals whose insights and aspirations made them employ imagination in creatively unique ways, time and time again turned seemingly inalterable tides of destiny and transformed them into something new and fresh hitherto inconceivable.

Individuals such as Einstein, Steve Jobs, Michael Jordan, The Beatles, and more, all had ‘epic failures’.  And yet, failure does not define them.

They imagined something better, something greater.

They imagined a better life for themselves, made a plan, CHANGED their paths, and each set a new rousing course the likes of which nigh nobody has followed.  Promptly, the jaws of defeat were smashed shut and not allowed to feed on their dreams.

Countless individuals such as the above have shown that when individual mindsets are lucid and precise, there is nothing that can stop them and their imagination.

Doubt no longer exists.

The insipid fades into the past.

Obstacles become opportunities.

Setbacks become turning points.

Life’s journey becomes an inspiring adventure.

And the creative individual becomes ultimately free.

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This article is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Zy Marquiez and TheBreakaway.wordpress.com.

Note: This Article was originally submitted to TheNewAgora – Elect To Govern Yourself and was published in their online and print magazine which features many great articles about a variety of salient and interesting topics.
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Zy Marquiez:

Zy Marquiez is an avid book reviewer, researcher, an open-minded skeptic, yogi, humanitarian, and freelance writer who studies regularly subjects like Consciousness, Education, Creativity, The Individual, Ancient History & Ancient Civilizations, Forbidden Archaeology, Big Pharma, Alternative Health, Space, Geoengineering, Social Engineering, Propaganda, and much more.

His own personal blog is BreakawayConsciousnessBlog.wordpress.com where his personal work is shared, while TheBreakaway.wordpress.com serves as a media portal which mirrors vital information usually ignored by mainstream press, but still highly crucial to our individual understanding of various facets of the world.

Creative Potential: Endless Possibilities, Endless Solutions

Fantasy
TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
March 17, 2017

What is imagination?

Imagination is the creator of every single tangible thing you have used in your life.

For the savvy and willing, it’s a powerful tool.  It’s creative consciousness in all its wondrous glory.

Coupled with intention, it’s an unstoppable weapon that the individual has under lock and key.

Imagination used correctly will give you insights which will pave the way for the journey through your life.

If the individual maintains himself mired within the endless possibilities available via the use of their creative consciousness and imagination, then their life will not only be full of meaning, but they will view reality through a kaleidoscope of possibilities.

What are the possibilities available to help push you beyond the threshold of stagnation and into the realm of action?

What are the possibilities available to push your knowledge and scope of reality beyond what you ever thought possible?

What are the possibilities available for you to solve issues plaguing you at this very moment?

There are two options: individuals can live life in neutral, allowing their thoughts to drift where they may, or the individuals can take over the reins of their life, use imagination to turbo-charge their realities and breakaway from the doldrums that plague them so.

The beauty of it this conundrum is that it’s only a choice.

The active life, or the vapid life.

Creativity, or stagnation.

Imagination, or conformity.

You decide.

Consciously Creating The Road Of Change, The Road Of Tomorrow

BeTheChange
TheBreakaway | BreakawayConciousness
Zy Marquiez
March 15, 2017

“I never see what has been done; I only see what remains to be done.”
– Buddha

Change is ever-present in our society.

Everywhere we look, in every realm we glance at, in every discipline we gaze into, there is a salient stream of change taking place.

Change is inherent to being part of a living system, that of nature – it is the rollercoaster upon which our life rides from beginning to end.

Throughout history we have examples of conscious individuals that have spawned ceaseless change through their individual actions and creative potential.  One of these individuals was Martin Luther King Jr.

Many people are quite familiar with King’s ‘I have a dream’ passage, and rightly so.  The  thoughts he expressed via that remark spawned wildfires that still burn to this day.

Another salient quote of his was:

“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’”

In a world where many people want change, where many people expect change from elsewhere , where many people demand change from outside avenues, it would be wise to take King’s words to heart.

Can we help other people with some health issues?  Can we help individuals with any particular setback they may run into?  Can we seek to make ameliorate the pain someone else might be feeling due to some troubling issue?  The question echoes endlessly:  What can we do for others?

Speaking of others, there is a certain section of the populace who seem to think that the only meaningful change that ever can happen must come from the outside – from others [i.e. politicians].  Ironically, the very change that can help us and help others is by putting our very consciousness and creativity into action.

Understanding that it is the individual who holds the power is emblematic to knowing that it is the light that shuns the darkness.  The one holding the most power in your life is you.  In each of our lives, it is us – the individual – who holds the aces in the deck.  However, we’ve been taught from youth to become dependent on others.

Need to learn about health?  Seek doctors.  Need to learn about spirituality?  Seek religion  Need to learn about schooling?  Seek schools.  Etc, etc, etc.  Rinse and repeat, endlessly.  We are taught to seek answers from elsewhere, never from ourselves.  Rarely will individuals here it is they who are the power players in their own game of life.  Rarely will we hear as individuals that it is us who are capable of creating our own solutions for ourselves, that is is us who can pave or own path.  But that is the truth.

Each and every one of us has power to attain understanding of countless issues, and its a lot simpler than most think, although it does take some work.  Perhaps modern life with endless conveniences and nigh everything at hand has made most of us lazy, and we have all gotten soft – when compared to our ancestors – when it comes to self sufficiency, but the fact remains that knowledge and awareness for us, and for other individuals remains at arms reach, ready to be had.  All we need to do is grab hold of it and bring it closer to us.  Awareness of what’s possible for all individuals is key.

Helping others attain an awareness of what’s working against them in life is an idea that’s become a catalyst in my life for quite some time.  This is because the burgeoning issues we are facing physically, mentally, psychologically, and so on are only getting more pressing by the day, and it’s imperative for cognizant individuals to come to terms with it, because they stand to get run over by the very system they work for, the very system that harvests their every branch of life.

Being keenly aware of the dastardly clever comptrollers that work behind the scenes and their modalities is but a start.  Be it incessant propaganda with the mainstream media, an onslaught of social engineering in its many forms, or a veritable storm of mind control, the scale at which we are facing troublesome issues is compounding quite rapidly.

Be that as it may, attaining individual self empowerment through proactive, responsible action is the gateway to our solutions.

By each of us employing conscious creativity and our unending inherent potential, we will finally be able to detach from the system-imposed paradigm we are brought into and reach more mindful pastures.

Therein, as we begin [or continue] to transition from a reactive and stagnant state, to a proactive and conscious state, those meddlesome issues that have plagued us will begin to melt away like snow in the dessert.

Always remember, the impetus for change begins with you, with your deeper consciousness.

Ponder a bit, what would Martin Luther King Jr. have accomplished if he chose to stay stagnant over the pressing issues that he faced?  The course of history would be far, far different.  Thankfully, that potentiality went by the wayside.

Ponder about what drives you; fight for what you believe in.  Don’t wait for issues to arrive at your doorstep before taking action because it will be too late.

Let’s quit falling into the whirlpool of twisted lies that are becoming more and more obvious every day.

Only through conscious action will we be able to reach the potential/goals that we each as an individual inherently has.

Keep searching.

Keep growing.

Keep learning.

Keep planting seeds.

Realizing how much we are capable of as individuals is far more important than anything else, and to be inactive when our own life needs us the most is the pull the plug on our own tomorrow.

Enjoy life – your gift – and make it count.

Become emboldened by your creative potential and let it take you into tomorrow.

After all, if you put your mind to it your creative potential cannot be thwarted.
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This article is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Zy Marquiez and TheBreakaway.wordpress.com.

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About The Author:

Zy Marquiez is an avid book reviewer, researcher, an open-minded skeptic, yogi, humanitarian, and freelance writer who studies regularly subjects like Consciousness, Education, Creativity, The Individual, Ancient History & Ancient Civilizations, Forbidden Archaeology, Big Pharma, Alternative Health, Space, Geoengineering, Social Engineering, Propaganda, and much more.

His own personal blog is BreakawayConsciousnessBlog.wordpress.com where his personal work is shared, while TheBreakaway.wordpress.com serves as a media portal which mirrors vital information usually ignored by mainstream press, but still highly crucial to our individual understanding of various facets of the world.

300 Word Memories #4 – Solitude

solitude2
TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
March 4 , 2017

“The important thing in our understanding is to have a smooth, free-thinking way of observation.  We have to think and to observe things without stagnation.  We should accept things as they are without difficulty.  Our mind should be soft and open enough to understand things as they are.  When our thinking is soft, it is called imperturbable thinking.  This kind of thinking is always testable.  It is called mindfulness.”
– Shunryu Suzuki, Zen Mind, Beginner’s Mind

“Conversation enriches the understanding, but solitude is the school of genius.”
– Edward Gibbon

There are two ways to live life.  Individuals can live in total awareness, like a newborn child who’s fully in tune and engaged with the full scale of their surroundings, which echoes wonder in every way shape or form.  Or, on the other hand, we can live in unawareness, where we are so detached where even the simplest things get by us.  This state is not unlike floating through life, like a leaf in the wind, letting life take you where it may.  In contrast, the opposite of that is the fish that is aware of its environment, and will swim with the tide when it’s advantageous, but will immediately change course and go against the tide when life demands it.

When individuals lack awareness, really simple things get by their defenses.  Examples of these are when we lose our keys, misplace our phone or the remote, forget an appointment, etc.  Each of these circumstances shows our lack of being in tune with our environments, which stems from being out of sync with our inner self.

On the opposite side of that spectrum lies awareness.

Awareness is walking outside, and noticing the warmth of the sun as it seeps through your skin; breathing in and feeling a full breath of fresh air as it goes fully into your lungs and feeling the energy it gives you; hearing how the birds chirp down the street even though the sound of traffic strains to override it; sensing someone’s emotions on a deeper level, even though you’ve only had a moment’s notice to pay attention to them; or even sensing something on instincts which would drift by someone if they weren’t paying attention.  All of these instances are felt deep down inside the individual, because they are aware.  But perhaps, one of the best ways to realize your awareness is locked in, like an athlete in the zone, is by being able to hear the stillness in your mind – the silence; full solitude.

In the silence we are capable of ascertaining more.  When the mind is cluttered, however, and filled to the brim, it is like a full cup of water, incapable of taking one more drop.  Worse, when merely one more drop of water gets added to the cup, the critical point arises where that one drop helps dislodge more than a magnitude of the single drop that went in, not unlike the person who faces one problem and has it spiral out of control into many issues.  Most of us including myself are probably familiar with these types of circumstances.  That is why pumping the breaks is crucial before we get to the point of no return.

Slowing down from our proverbial warp speed is when we as individuals are capable of understanding more, when we retain the maximum efficiency of our capabilities since we are fully engaged.   That very moment is when we are – as individuals – capable of functioning at a higher degree of understanding, a higher degree of knowing.  And one of the highest degrees of knowing is that of the self – that of your inner-most being.

It’s in the silence that our answers reside, in the stillness of the vacuum – in the solitude of life.

But don’t believe any of this; in fact, strive to disbelieve.  Seek your own answers – through every step of your life, throughout every breath, in full awareness, always.

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This article is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Zy Marquiez and TheBreakaway.wordpress.com.

Solitude Quotes

solitude
TheBreakway
Zy Marquiez
March 4, 2017

Below follow some quotes on solitude.  Enjoy.

“Loneliness is the poverty of self; solitude is the richness of self.”
– May Sarton

“Solitude is a place of purification.”
– Martin Buber

“The Monotony & Solitude of a quiet life stimulates the creative mind.”
– Albert Einstein

“It is easy in the world to live after the world’s opinion; it is easy in solitude to live after our own; but the great man is he who in the midst of the crowd keeps with perfect sweetness the independence of solitude.”
– Ralph Waldo Emerson, The Complete Prose Works

“A poet is a nightingale, who sits in darkness and sings to cheer its own solitude with sweet sounds.”
– Percy Bysshe Shelley

“Solitude vivifies; isolation kills.”
– Joseph Roux

“We talk of communing with Nature, but ‘tis with ourselves we commune…Nature furnishes the conditions – the solitude – and the soul furnishes the entertainment.”
– John Burroughs

“To give thanks in solitude is enough.  Thanksgiving has wings and goes where it must go.  Your prayer knows much more about it than you do.”
– Victor Hugo

“The more powerful and original a mind, the more it will incline towards the religion of solitude.”
– Aldous Huxley

“Conversation enriches the understanding, but solitude is the school of genius.”
– Edward Gibbon

“Alone let him constantly meditate in solitude on that which is salutary for his soul, for he who meditates in solitude attains supreme bliss.”
– Guru Nanak

“Then stirs the feeling infinite so felt in solitude, where we are least alone.”
– Lord Byron

“Solitude us strength; to depend on the presence of the crowd is weakness.  The man who needs a mob to nerve him is much more alone than he imagines.”
– Paul Brunton

“I had three chairs in my house; one for solitude, two for friendship, three for society.”
– Henry David Thoreau

“One of the greatest necessities in America is to discover creative solitude.”
– Carl Sandburg

“Solitude is creativity’s best friend, and solitude is refreshment for our souls.”
– Naomi Judd

“Someone who’s awake in the middle of the night is a soul consciousness when everyone else is asleep, and that creates a feeling of solitude in poetry that I very much like.”
– Edward Hirsch

300 Word Memories #2 – Perseverance

perseverance
TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
February 27, 2017

“We acquire strength we have overcome.”
– Ralph Waldo Emerson

“People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.”
– George Bernard Shaw

It seems that no matter where one ventures in life, no matter where one attempt to make berth, there’s always going to be obstacles in the way.  Sometimes, these obstacles can be overcome with perseverance and determination.  Other times, it is not so simple.

Whether it is family, work, business, school, relationships, it seems that each of these areas always has something to offer for growth that keeps us on our toes, although many times we might not see it, or even want to come to terms with it.

Living in a society in which governments overlook freedoms, schools overlook education, businesses overlook quality, the medical establishment overlooks health, religion overlooks morality, it’s no wonder many people disappointed with what life has to offer.  In great part, people’s point of views and virtues are literally molded, from the ground up in clay-like fashion, by these very institutions.

Regarding this disturbing trend, regarding those pulling the strings, Edward Bernays, the father of public relations, once had this today, which he shared in his book Propaganda [review here]:

“The conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organized habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in democratic society. Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country. …We are governed, our minds are molded, our tastes formed, our ideas suggested, largely by men we have never heard ofIn almost every act of our daily lives, whether in the sphere of politics or business, in our social conduct or our ethical thinking, we are dominated by the relatively small number of persons…who understand the mental processes and social patterns of the masses. It is they who pull the wires which control the public mind.”[1][Bold Emphasis Added]

Such truly is the state of the world, and has been for nigh a century.

If the groups socially engineering these changes were not morally bankrupt, then many significant issues would be a lot simpler and perhaps better.  On the flip side, though, one could also argue that there would be less to learn as a society, and as individuals, if these obstacles opportunities were not available.  Of course, this is not to give silence to evil acts nor to justify them.  This is simply to point out that from every obstacle, there is something to be learned, and we usually learn the most when we are put to the test in keen fashion.

There are times that no matter what we do, it seems like the storm is coming, and we will be in its path, no matter what we do.  When that time comes, we need to be resolute in our character, and realize that facing obstacles, no matter how tough it may seem at the time, will always yield a more robust individual repertoire.

Only by weathering the storm do each of us as individuals end up being forged by the fire, like a sword that is cast ironclad, but in our case, we are cast in the profound lessons of life.

Only by being aware of the door opening, may we find a new path.

And only by walking through the fire will we know that we are immune to the flames.

Stay strong, because you are forged by the very thing that the Universe is made of.  And since we are each a reflections of the Universe, as the Universe is boundless, so is our resolve.

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Sources & References:

[1] Edward Bernays, Propaganda, pp. 37-38.
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This article is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Zy Marquiez and TheBreakaway.wordpress.com.