Geert Chatrou used to drive his family crazy with his constant whistling. Then the Dutch whistler’s sister-in-law told him about the International Whistlers Convention in Louisburg, North Carolina. Life has never been the same. He won World Championships in 2004, 2005, and 2008. Now he whistles for his living.
Chatrou’s talent is stunning, but the truth is we all have talents. They are banked inside us, searching for a chance to burst into flame. We can whistle, dance, paint, write, bake, sing, or draw. We can run for political office, climb peaks, run marathons, inspire audiences, and rear healthy children.
I’ve seen a lot of inner fires quenched by doubting or disdainful friends, families, and colleagues. I’ve also watched people ignore the doubters, pursue their passions, and set others on fire through their example.
Our talents are our gifts to the world, and gifts are meant to be given.
There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all of time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and it will be lost. The world will not have it. It is not your business to determine how good it is nor how valuable nor how it compares with other expressions. It is your business to keep it yours clearly and directly, to keep the channel open. You do not even have to believe in yourself or your work. You have to keep yourself open and aware to the urges that motivate you. Keep the channel open. ~Martha Graham