Hard work is more important for success than talent


The children’s fable “The Tortoise and the Hare” is an example of how one can be naturally talented at something like racing, but in failing to apply skill, one will lose to someone with more determination.

Sarah Levenson, Editor-in-Chief

Everyone knows or has known someone who naturally excels at a particular skill, subject, sport or job. Someone who does not need to put in any extra effort or experience the slightest bit of struggle in order to naturally outdo anyone else who tries to do the same act as them. Whether it be a dancer who is physically more flexible than humanly achievable for most, or a singer who is automatically able to hit any note with the very rare ability of having perfect pitch, some are just innately talented. 

However, simply having loads of talent can only get one so far if it is never utilized. This is due to the fact that having an immense amount of talent can lead to laziness. When one is incredibly skilled at something, they feel as though they need to focus less on hard work in order to remain at the top of the playing field. In other words, those who believe themselves to be supremely talented will slack off and stop putting in the same amount of effort as other less talented people, either because they think they cannot be bested, or because they are naive enough to think that sheer talent will lead them to success. 

Of course, having a good work ethic alone is not enough to put one on the same level as an essentially gifted person. It is still necessary for one to have the mental capacity and some level of talent to complete and excel at a given task, though it is not everything. Through hard work, practice and dedication, anyone is capable of compensating for their lack of natural giftedness. 

This concept comes into play in the children’s fable “The Tortoise and the Hare,” as the story shows how one can be naturally talented at something, but if they fail to apply their skill and put in work, they will ultimately lose to someone with more determination. In the story, a tortoise and a hare are both competing in a race. The hare is naturally gifted with speed and agility, while the tortoise has naturally shorter legs and almost no speed or swiftness. Since the hare knows it has never lost a race and is easily capable of blowing the tortoise away in the competition, it decides to take a nap for most of the races’ duration. As the hare is slacking off, the tortoise is working hard and walking through the course, and eventually ends up winning despite his inherent disadvantages. Long story short, this demonstrates how natural talent means nothing if it is not applied, and anyone who works hard like the tortoise has the ability to overpower someone like the hare. 

Ultimately, talent is nothing more than a headstart towards success for some. Whether one is naturally talented or not, such gifts become virtually useless without the all-important characteristic of hard work pushing them to succeed and strive for an even higher level of skill and greatness.