When I was rooting around in an old box the other day I found a couple of tests my Mum had kept from my primary school days.
At a guess, they date to me being 7 or 8 and they show, quite beautifully, how we all have natural aptitudes for some skills over others.
You see, numbers just aren’t my thing. Look at this.
And now look at this.
3/30 for my times tables. Full marks for spelling. There’s no denying that one just came more naturally.
That doesn’t mean to say I’m bad with numbers (I’m the proud-and-astonished owner of an A* at maths GCSE, thank you very much). I put in the hard work and things improved…
…but it never came naturally and I’ve always had to work at it.
Words are different. Words make sense to me. They come in all shapes and sizes, all moods and nuances. I love spelling. I love reading. I LOVE writing.
This is a great way to build a business, find a job you can thrive in or pick up the perfect pastime.
The trick is to find what you’re naturally good at, what makes you tick, makes you smile, makes you forget the time and disappear off into your own happy little world. Usually what we’re naturally good at aligns nicely with what we enjoy, because we head off into that happy space, and because we get results from our efforts.
Don’t get me wrong. I still work at my writing every day. I read, I learn, I practise, I study. An aptitude is just a starting point.
And don’t think for a moment that you can JUST do that one thing you love. Understand what doesn’t come so easily, and then work at it. Teach yourself, put in the time and effort, and seek out the right help. The determination to improve goes a long way.