A few years back A couple weeks ago, many of us revered Kanye as a genius. How do we feel today?

mad-kanye

“We miss the ooooold Kanye!” Ya know, the one who didn’t take himself so seriously?

We won’t get into mental health debates or politics. He just represents one of the many creatives, throughout history, who have fallen victim to their own hype.

“Intelligence is. Talent does. Genius sees beyond both.”

Modern science contends that having an IQ of 175+ makes someone a genius. By that standard, Albert Einstein, was a “genius.” Our smart friend Alby E. once said, “Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.”

Breakin’ it Down

Intelligence is essentially about how quickly a person can get from point A to point B. Since we all have different inclinations, abilities, and interests, we display our aptitude in various ways.

9-types-of-intelligence-infographic

Talent is ultimately a product of exposure, practice, discipline, and consistency. Only a dedicated few work to develop their abilities. Repetition on a quest for mastery will always take us further than gifts we don’t invest in. Talent really boils down to focusing on your strengths and putting in work to make the rest come together.

While the Kanyes and Beyonces of the world are extremely talented and super popular… they’re not geniuses.

Genius is different.

The Facts

In ancient Rome, genius was the guiding spirit of a person, family, or place. The word is also related to the Latin verb genui/genitus  (to bring into being, create, produce) and to the Greek word for “birth.”

The term genius acquired its modern sense during the Renaissance.  It was associated with the word ingenium which referred to our innate dispositions and talents, as well as our inborn nature.

Where We F*cked Up

We started referring to people who made remarkable discoveries and created masterpieces as geniuses. But “innate” and “inborn” doesn’t mean “particular to you” or “exclusively yours.”

Back in the day, people understood that “genius” was supernatural. Fueled by divine inspiration and personal purpose. Legends of muses and other mythical helpers came to pass because people knew that genius was bigger than oneself.

Today, we put so much pressure on ourselves to succeed and outperform others. It gets especially scary when we compete against a cooler, more popular, version of ourselves.

Suuure you have tons of life experience, you’re passionate and determined. But your brilliance is illuminated by your inner light. The same light we all share. We dim that light every time we put the pressure to “be a genius” on ourselves.

No one is A genius.

You’re Human, remember? 

Some people we call geniuses today, weren’t even considered sane until years after they were 6 feet under.  On the flip side, do you know how many “geniuses” turned out to be one-hit-wonders because they wanted to stay on top?! They became paralyzed with doubt and insecurity until they self-destructed.

geniuses that went crazyMy photoshop skills aren’t too shabby… but this is a REAL LIFE google search!

Never Fear!

I mean, you will, but call it what it is and rise above it. Stop hanging unrealistic expectations over your head. Don’t cuss yourself out over unchecked tasks on your to-do list. Don’t detach from your feelings, or other people, when you find yourself questioning if anyone else “gets” your vision. It’s self-sabotage to rely solely on yourself and your limited understanding.

Genius isn’t a byproduct of solitude, stress, anxiety or working late hours. Genius is what we make room for when we stop overthinking. When we silence the repetitive mental chatter. When we stop second-guessing and doubting. When we stop trying so hard.

Inspiration in the form of “genius” can grace us all. At any given moment. When on you’re on vacation, shampooing your hair, or after rapping a verse from your favorite song at the top of your lungs. Genius comes to visit when we’re having fun. Like a burst of inner G. 

“It takes a lot of time to be a genius. You have to sit around so much, doing nothing, really doing nothing.” ― Gertrude Stein

Make Peace with the Facts

With all due respect… you gotta get over yourself. That way, even if you fall, you can get back up and keep it movin. Instead of staying on the floor worried about whose laughing.

crying-guy

Create from a space of love. Disconnect from the idea that you’re super unique and misunderstood. Detach from the notion that you were “chosen” above other people. Understand that regardless of what you produce and the feedback you get, you are not superhuman. You’re just a conduit. We’re all just vessels for the greater good.

If an idea you deem “genius” flops, that’s not rejection of who you are or a reflection of your worth. The world may not be ready to embrace your kinda real. And that’s ok. Maybe you haven’t connected with your tribe yet! No matter the outcome, remember that we’re all God’s creative outlets. Stay humble, open to inspiration and give thanks no matter what.

Want to stay healthy and sane?

Take a deep breathe and say it with me, “I am not a genius.” 

You don’t need those kinda problems! Trust me.

Creation is bigger than you! Surrender to the creative process. Trust divine timing. Know that you’re exactly where you are supposed to be. 

Next time you get a creative rush… don’t overthink it. Wiggle your toes and get to work when genius strikes! Create and share, then let go. REPEAT x forever.