The greatest danger for most of us is not that our aim is too high and we miss it, but that it is too low and we reach it.
What you’re doing now, or have done in the past, need not determine what you can do next and in the future.
Whatever your aptitudes, the greatest source of achievement is passion. Aptitude matters, but passion often matters more… If you love doing something, you’ll be constantly drawn to get better at it.
Never underestimate the vital importance of finding early in life the work that for you is play. This turns possible underachievers into happy warriors.
If you are considering earning your living from your Element, it’s important to bear in mind that you not only have to love what you do; you should also enjoy the culture and the tribes that go with it.
The word amateur derives from the Latin word amator, which means lover, devoted friend, or someone who is in avid pursuit of an objective. In the original sense, an amateur is someone who does something for the love of it.
In my experience, most people have a narrow view of intelligence, tending to think of it mainly in terms of academic ability. This is why so many people who are smart in other ways end up thinking that they’re not smart at all. There are myths surrounding creativity as well.
When you’re in your Element, your sense of time changes. If you’re doing something that you love, an hour can feel like five minutes; if you are doing something that you do not, five minutes can feel like an hour.
Musicians love the sounds they make, natural writers love words, dancers love movement, mathematicians love numbers, entrepreneurs love making deals, great teachers love teaching. This is why people who fundamentally love what they do don’t think of it as work in the ordinary sense of the word. They do it because they want to and because, when they do, they are in their Element.