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The original impulse behind the book was a recognition I have had that there are very
many people who don't really enjoy what they do or perhaps even how they live. They don't
enjoy the work they do, and they sort of tolerate it. You know, they get through the week and
they wait for the weekend. There's a lot of evidence of that, by the way. A lot of studies
have shown there's massive disengagement at the workplace. And yet, I also meet people
who love what they do and that couldn't really imagine doing anything else. If you said to
them, why don't you do something else for a change? They really wouldn't know what you
meant. They'd say, well, this isn't, you know, what I do. It's who I am. And they could be
veterinarians, pathologists. They could be dancers, musicians.They could be teachers,
homemakers. You name it. If you can think of a human activity or occupation, there will
be people who love it and live for it and others who couldn't bear it. So I was just
intrigued by the difference between these two ways of being, and the difference it makes.
I think it has really considerable implications. It has implications that are social in character.
You know, if we have communities where large tranches of the population are simply detached,
disengaged, uninterested, of course it has big consequences. If people are disengaged
at work it has large consequences. Now, I'm not suggesting for a minute that if everybody
finds their element, it'll solve every social problem we face, but I'm certainly saying
it would help. And my long-term conviction has always been that we all have deep talents
and the potential for engagement and we should explore it.
I have fallen into using the phrase, "the other climate crisis." And I think it has
a resonance. What I mean by it is that we have become used to the fact now, I least
I hope we have, that there is a crisis in the world's natural resources. But I also
think that there is a crisis in our human resources and how we use them. And one of
the themes of the book is to make an analogy between the natural world and the way our
lives operate. We tend to think that we, you know, we persuade ourselves because we live
in cities like New York or L.A. or wherever, that we're somehow independent of nature.
And of course, we're not. We're organic creatures. We live and we die and we -- we're subject
to the seasons of our own lives. And just like the earth, it seems to me, human resources
are often buried deep beneath the surface. You can spend your whole life completely oblivious
to some talent you may have because the opportunity never showed up for you to discover it or
to develop it.
So that's the broad aim of the book is to dig down more deeply into what it means to
be in your element, but also the book is really focused on providing some practical support,
help and exercises. And if that's a journey that you're interested in taking for yourself
or for people you know and love, your children or people you work with, then I hope you'll
stay with us here on Big Think Mentor.
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The Path to Discovering Your Talents and Passions, with Sir Ken Robinson | Big Think Mentor

1874 Folder Collection
Susy published on September 23, 2014
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