I’ve always been terrified to believe I’m talented.
It was easy to believe I was smart. School work came easily, so my grades were good. Everybody told me I was smart. I had objective measures that showed I performed better than other people.
But talent was a much scarier issue. I could take IQ tests or other standardized tests which seemed to prove I was bright. But there were no tests for talent. No matter what I did, I was always terrified that it wasn’t good enough. Even though other people told me they loved the creative work I did, I was scared to get my hopes up.
So I lied to myself. Maybe you do, too.
Writer V.S. Naipaul famously wrote, “The only lies for which we are truly punished are those we tell ourselves.” And my self-deception about my talent has held me back time and time again.