The unholy obsession that we as a people have with genius, competence, and ‘natural talent’ is a toxic mess. We often don’t realize it. It’s an ingrained part of our culture (or at least, across popular and easily accessible cultures) to emphasize talent in children as a focal point of their worth.
We appreciate children for being talented, but there are pitfalls in that appreciation that we disregard. As adults, our praise is conditional. We mean to say that children are well-formed or skilled FOR THEIR AGE. But a child cannot possibly make that distinction. Continue reading “The Key to Success is Not Competence, but Persistence”