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Last week, at one of my networking group meetings, we discussed Gay Hendricks’ book, The Big Leap, and his concept of the Zone of Genius. Our hostess focused on the idea that if we stayed in our Zone of Genius pretty much the whole day, that would bring us the most fulfillment and success, in our careers and our lives. We then did some exercises to re-discover and identify where our genius lies.
And here is what’s so sad, I said to the group, when it was my turn. Here we are trying to resurrect our genius and encouraged to spend lots of time in that zone; yet for 12 or more years kids are prevented from doing this very thing, especially in school.
What, you want to draw all day? No drawing until you learn your math facts.
Do experiments all day? I don’t think so – you’ve got English and Geography and Economics…
Spend most of your time reading…or working with animals…or learning about aviation…you get the idea – it just can’t be done. School is set up to give you a well-rounded education and you must spend lots of time on these other topics, whether they are relevant to your real life or not.
And then, years later, therapists and life coaches and career counselors ask, So what do you love? Why aren’t you doing that? What makes you the happiest?
Geesh, why not encourage kids to do that in the first place – discover where your genius is and you will be happy and successful!