Dear Hidden Genius,
Quit hiding. You aren’t hidden because the world is conspiring against you. And if you were a genius, you wouldn’t really be hidden. So…
Quit hiding. You know who you are. Barista who thinks that being a barista is beneath you. Your boss is an idiot, and you have all of the answers, if only they would listen to you, but they are stifling your creativity, they don’t understand your genius. Your style is being cramped. If only all of the unintellegents would get out of your way.
Okay, coffee shop writing guy. (I say this as I’m writing in the coffee shop). You have your Macbook out, and your pad and paper, and you do all sorts of pondering and web surfing, but very little writing. Yes, I know, the writing process is long and arduous, and nobody else understands your struggle. But your book isn’t going to get written just because you have a fancy tea carafe on your table, and you have a leather shoulder bag draped over your chair. One of the key components of writing, is, in fact, writing. And further, if you are tired of being a hidden genius, at some point, you are going to have to share your work.
Assistant Coach, you are not a hidden genius, you are an assistant coach. Fill your role. Love your players, serve the program, and honor the opportunity you have. It’s okay to work towards something “bigger”. But not at the expense of the people that you currently have a responsibility to. And, working towards something bigger doesn’t include pretending to know more than your head coach. Even more dangerous is pretending to know more than yourself. If only someone would notice you, you could be coaching in the BIG TIME, but the world is clearly conspiring against you, you can’t catch a break, you are such a hidden genius.
New Age, Under Age philosopher, with your pondering, thinking, and problem solving. You have so many answers for the problems of the world, but nobody will listen to you. I don’t know why, but they want to stamp out your genius. You come up with so many solutions, how could everyone else be so foolish not to see the obvious things that you see. You should be running that company, or that team, or maybe even the country, depending on your level of genius or your level of hidden-ness.
I’ve got some disappointing and disturbing news for you. You aren’t hidden because the world is conspiring against you. You are hidden because you are afraid to get out in front of everyone. If you try and share your thoughts, if you try and lead your own team, if you step out on a limb and share your ideas with your boss, you might fail. And if you fail, then maybe you aren’t really a genius, and then what. What will you do with all of your ideas, and thoughts, and ponderings?
Things change for you when you have to take action.
And things change for everyone else when you have the courage to take action.
And you know what, you may not be a “genius”, like we usually think of one. But I believe that you are a probably a little bit of a genius. Seth Godin talks about the idea that there is a little genius in all of us, because at some point, we’ve solved a problem that those around us couldn’t solve. We came up with a solution that other people weren’t coming up with. We thought about something in a different light. Most of us, have some type of genius moment, from time to time. So there is some genius in there.
Understand that your level of genius does not directly correlate with your level of brooding, but there is likely some genius in there.
It’s important to recognize that the people we consider geniuses, didn’t get that way by hiding in coffee shops, or complaining to strangers about what needs to be changed, or brooding about with all of their genius weighing them down socially and emotionally.
And there is no value, for you or anyone else, if you continue to suffer as a hidden genius. The contribution is made when you do, and share, and say it out loud. And again, this is where the challenge comes in for you. You are a world class writer until nobody actually wants to read your stuff. You are undefeated until you actually lead a team. You have all of the answers until people are actually relying on you in real-time.
Create and share, learn more, lead more, and take the “failures” and successes in stride. Remember, that mostly, the only one hiding your genius is you. Once you get over your fear (and that’s what it is, Hidden Genius, I know you. You are afraid) then you can get on with the business of creating and sharing that is more in line with who you are and who you are working to become.
Get busy livin’ or get busy dyin’, Hidden Genius. And make no mistake, if you don’t get busy livin’ your genius will go from hidden to buried, probably beneath a pile of bitterness and anger.
No more brooding. No more pondering without action. No more fake answers to fake questions that you have asked and answered and applauded all by yourself. No more substituting experiences for mere observation. Quit sitting on the sidelines judging and condemning, and get out there.