“nothing is more common, than unsuccessful men with talent”
I was coming down a path on Stone Mountain and I noticed someone coming up and the shirt read “Lazy but Talented.” Immediately it resonated with me. I don’t know if I was delusional at this point from struggling to run around Stone Mountain and after that UP Stone Mountain as my friend keep pushing me to go a little further. (Yes, even motivators need to be motivated from time to time) Yet when I saw that shirt, I instantaneously focused on it and a question popped in my mind. How many of us use that as an excuse? Yes I’m lazy but I’m talented. It sounds like a cop out, like a way to turn a negative into a positive. However, what if we reversed the order of the words to “Talented but Lazy?” This order seems to be more of a reality. We are each born with a Talent, a skill, a gift, yet most of us never use that to its full potential because we are Lazy. Is that easy to hear, no. However, it may be the jolt that is needed to do something about it.
Muhammad Ali, RIP, was the Greatest not just because he was Talented but because he was also not Lazy. Ali would train 6 days a week, beginning his 6 mile run at 5:30 in the morning. In the gym he would train not to hit a number but rather until exhaustion. It is widely known that he hated training yet he knew it would be hard work that would separate him from others. Everyone who is a professional has some level of Talent, the only thing that determines who will be a Champion and who will not is his or her work ethic. Lazy but Talented will definitely not get you there. Ali hated every minute of training. Yet he said, “Don’t quit. Suffer now and live the rest of your life as a Champion.” He is an example of what happens when you are Talented and NOT Lazy.
“Will you suffer now to live the rest of your life as a Champion?”
JaMarcus Russell, was the number 1 draft pick in 2007 NFL Draft. He had a standout career in high school, where some of his records still stand and in college he had a 21 – 4 record, being voted the MVP for the Cotton Bowl. Russell was widely considered to be the Number 1 pick in the draft amongst a talented group that included Calvin Johnson, Adrian Peterson and Darrelle Revis. Additionally, an NFL analyst described his Pro Day as the best he had ever seen for a quarterback. How does someone like this go down as one of the biggest draft busts in NFL history? He was Talented but Lazy. After being drafted he held out and missed all of training camp, a crucial time for a rookie to put in work and earn the respect and build chemistry with his teammates. Additionally, he had issues with his weight. As an already bigger quarterback he came in to his rookie year at 265 lbs, during the offseason his weight increased up to over 300 lbs, showing his lack of conditioning in the offseason. All of these actions back up the assessment that he “doesn’t care about football. He doesn’t have the passion for the game, doesn’t have the work ethic.” As a result, he was not willing to do what was required to be a Champion once he got to the NFL. He is an example of what happens when you are Talented but Lazy.
Ali is the Champion, the Greatest of All Time, and the original People’s Champ. He was Talented and NOT Lazy. Russell was the number 1 draft pick amongst a talented draft class and arguably the biggest bust in draft history. He was Talented but Lazy. Both of these men had the same opportunity. Both of these men were gifted with amazing talent, yet one is an example of what can happen when you work to hone your talent and the other is an example of what can happen when the Talent is left on its own without sharping. You too have the same opportunity as these men, the same 24 hours that they had, is afforded to you as well. The only difference in your story, if you will be more Ali than Russell is how you use those hours. So the choice is yours…
You can live as most people do and be Talented but Lazy or you can be like the G.O.A.T.; Talented and NOT Lazy.
Jay The Motivator