For the young this is most damaging to their starting point in life and to their future. For the young who have been gifted in certain areas and they think they know it. For them to choose not to pursue it is defiantly most harmful to the young one. The gift of intelligence is a good one. Then the young person thinking they are so smart only puts forth minimal effort or worse zero effort. The same goes for the young person who is gifted in athletics and only thinks the minimum effort is good enough or comes up with a string of excuses as to why they should not. No matter the reason or explanation. The window of greater opportunity has a time limit. If the child misses it. The rewards are zero. If the child becomes an older adult and then decides to pursue excellence. Then the rewards will only be some cheesy accolade.
The pursuit of your gift will have its reward greater than you can realize. The rejection of your gifts based in some kind of fear. Will gain you nothing. The nothing I'm talking about isn't just money lost or unseen. The evolution of you will be stagnated, limited and/or slowed down.
I once wrote many years ago The following.
"It's easy to be average, Just don't try very hard": C.J.MacKechnie
Then that star wars character "YODA" What did he say about trying? Get the point.
For some people being average is fine and that is OK. But, If your actively laying down a whole bunch of excuses why you shouldn't or couldn't or cant put forth that great effort. Then you will be one of those who will say to themselves. I should have been, I could have been, I would have been, My life would have been better if I had just ...., and so on. Then that can lead to your own personal insults of your younger self. Which leads to perpetual mental torment.
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Musings of an American Truck Driver