When you were a child, you always naively categorized things as “things you’re good at” and “things you’re terrible at.” When in reality, there were things that seemingly took little effort because you were interested in them and things that made your head hurt because you had to concentrate. You were made to believe that you either had a skill or didn’t. You didn’t have the depth of knowledge needed yet to understand that there is no “math gene” or no “piano gene” and these skills come from a dedicated effort.
From the Law: SOFTEN PEOPLE’S RESISTANCE
“It is always better to praise people for their effort, not their talent. When you extol people for their talent, there is a slight deprecation implied, as if they were simply lucky for being born with natural skill. Instead, everyone likes to feel that they earned their good fortune through hard work, and that is where you must aim your praise.” -Robert Greene (pg.196)