“For I am I: ergo, the truth of myself; my own sphinx, conflict, chaos, vortex—asymmetric to all rhythms, oblique to all paths. I am the prism between black and white: mine own unison in duality.”
Interesting read from the book “In Search of the Human Mind” by Robert Sternberg. It lists a series of points on, as you may have gathered from the title, why intelligent people fail. I’ve picked out what I find to be the most pertinent points, but do click the link at the bottom for the full list. (emphasis by me)
1. Lack of motivation. A talent is irrelevant if a person is not motivated to use it. Motivation may be external (for example, social approval) or internal (satisfaction from a job well-done, for instance). External sources tend to be transient, while internal sources tend to produce more consistent performance.
7. Inability to complete tasks. For some people nothing ever draws to a close. Perhaps it’s fear of what they would do next or fear of becoming hopelessly enmeshed in detail.
19. Lack of balance between critical, analytical thinking and creative, synthetic thinking. It is important for people to learn what kind of thinking is expected of them in each situation.
20. Too little or too much self-confidence. Lack of self-confidence can gnaw away at a person’s ability to get things done and become a self-fulfilling prophecy. Conversely, individuals with too much self-confidence may not know when to admit they are wrong or in need of self-improvement.
Sternberg, R. (1994). In search of the human mind.
Sunshine, I don’t need you. Your glimmer gives me no hope right now, because I don’t need hope.
Wind, do not carry me, for your momentum is meaningless.
People, I don’t need your motivation. You are distractions.
Weights, I do not need to lift you. I do not need to pull you or push you. I carry my own weight.
Gym, I don’t need your restrictive ideological capitalist framework or your comfort soaked padded seats. The world will suffice.
Arms, legs, body I do not need you to help me be physical. All I need is sheer heart.
Desire, anger and frustration, I do not need you. My mind need be devoid of emotion.
Ode to a Nightingale by John Keats (circa May 1819) (extract)
Fade far away, dissolve, and quite forget
What thou among the leaves hast never known,
The weariness, the fever, and the fret
Here, where men sit and hear each other groan;
Where palsy shakes a few, sad, last gray hairs,
Where youth grows pale, and spectre-thin, and dies;
Where but to think is to be full of sorrow
And leaden-eyed despairs,
Where Beauty cannot keep her lustrous eyes,
Or new Love pine at them beyond to-morrow.
(Full poem here; http://englishhistory.net/keats/poetry/odetoanightingale.html )