Phenomenal Success: Opportunities Over Talent?

Posted on July 8, 2010

By Oviya Govindan:

Life is a beautiful journey. Those who succeed and come out of it with flying colors each have their own USP for success. Broadly classifying these factors that thrust the deserving into the spot light, one can find that some fight it out to the top with sheer talent, and the grit and determination that comes along with believing in their abilities. Some others emerge winners and embrace glory only by virtue of the plethora of opportunities offered to them. I wonder though, which of these two is a peerless factor for success.

In a country like ours it needs no saying that there is a pool of the talented and then there is a pool of the successful; and a yawning gap between the two in a lot of cases. The Rural/Urban disparity is huge. While a normal student in the city applies for innumerable conferences and competitions, goes on study at top universities, the rural star might still be looking at the other awestruck and gaping. He might be a brilliant student in the circumference of his village or suburb. But there is an information gap that limits his opportunity bucket. It may be plain lack of access to relevant information. Or the paucity of money to enable further studies.

The combination of these factors, lack of adequate exposure to opportunities, lack of funds, or lack of specialized attention to hone skills – all contribute to the suppression of budding achievers.

These unsung heroes lay far from the maddening crowd, their claim for success unrecognized. It is a scary thought indeed, to think that Thomas Gray might be right after all and that ‘Full many a gem of ray purest serene the dark unfathomed caves of the ocean bear; Full many a flower is born to blush unseen and waste its sweetness on desert air” Unsung heroes abound, their existence hardly acknowledged.

Some claim, that if a person had immense potential that will automatically lift him out of the circumstances under which he was born. He can break the boundaries that chain him and shine like a beacon light. Indeed there have been very many people of such kind. By virtue of their talent and genius, have risen to great heights and achieved grand success. When talent is imminent, opportunities have come searching and knocked on their doors and pulled them to breathtaking heights of glory. Plenty are the rag to riches stories.

But again, can we make a sweeping generalization that if there is talent it will find its way out somehow? What about the millions who lie leading domicile lives, some scarcely even daring to dream beyond the reality around them? While an average student in the city gets exposed to various activities and discovers his calling, the underprivileged do not have any means of discovering themselves. While any normal student is somehow made to get into a good position by parental influence if nothing else, the normal youngster in the rural area will be content sitting and counting sheep even if he had enormous potential in the field of say, sports. Not that farming or traditional occupations are worthless, the point is that a person who’s calling might be elsewhere is forced to remain unrecognized.

Opportunities matter a great deal and creating opportunities by virtue of talent can only get one so far. However it can also be said that in the end, however long it may take, if recognition is due, it will be given where deserved for the deserving ultimately, after years of struggle will make a mark. Someday.

This is idealistic. Success seems to me a fluid concept however. I have said, that recognition will be given where it’s due. Does recognition then constitute success? If being known and accepted and celebrated by the world alone is accomplishment, it is a rather limited perspective of success. Does one need the branding of the society and the ‘Others’ to accept oneself as a ‘Success’?

If we are to think idealistically, so long as one is satisfied by one’s achievements that ought to be enough of a reason for us to know that we are one among life’s winners.

Living for oneself and making our hearts’ dreams come true is true achievement and Victory with a ‘V’.

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