Many of us don’t like reading statements like this because they take away our excuses for why we aren’t a genius. If the above statement is true, that means that genius is not reserved for those chosen by genetics, fate, or mother nature. It is a characteristic that can be developed by anyone who is willing to put in the foundational work. This is where it falls apart for most of us. We would rather assume that people like Einstein, Hemingway, and Jobs were simply born with far superior capabilities than we were.
Now, I never knew him personally, but I don’t think that Steve Jobs just woke up one day and decided, “I’m gonna be a disruptive innovator and create Apple.” Jobs had been practicing thinking differently and challenging convention his entire life. The reason he was the right person to create and lead Apple when the time came was because he had spent years doing the foundational preparation needed to become the type of person who makes good art.
All of us want the treasure, but very few of us want to dig the hole. The future of innovation and leadership in any industry belongs to those who start digging early. The brighter tomorrow is created by those who have lived yesterday and today with intention, the intention of cultivating the skills and vision needed to make good art.