I was talking to a friend about my financial accounting exam this coming Friday.
Mostly I am a bit panicked.
There are, I suppose, some who are simply so naturally skilled at accounting, who grasp the concepts so easily that they can skate along. Rarely is this me. I learn by a judicious application of, well, ass to seat and pen to paper. I guess, in this case, fingers to keyboard, since all of my study materials are on line questions.
I am not brilliant. I will say that again. I am not brilliant.
Mostly what I am is a combination of curious and diligent. I am good at focusing, I am good at asking questions and I am good at knowing what it takes for me to be successful, which mostly means that I know that I will pass this exam by doing question after question. It is boring. It is tedious. I may lose my mind if I get another question about costing for a stuffed alligator factory, the lampshade budgeting requirements or the break even point at the pen manufacturer.
I am the annoying kind of smart. Smart enough to be let in to do a grad degree, but not so brilliant that I will ever ace all of it, even with an extraordinary amount of effort. Mostly I am going to muddle through. I will have occasional flashes of brilliance. Mostly I will plug away. I will do question after question. I will start my essays early, so that I have time to refine. I will read the text and then I will read and highlight and then I will make notes.
I am frustrated by the notion that I am brilliant. (Which was his word). Mostly because people assume that I don’t have to work and I don’t have reason to worry. I am frustrated because it is often hard for me. It is often challenging and rarely easy. I get my marks the old fashioned way – by hard work.
So stop telling me not to worry because I’m smart. I’m only smart enough to realize that I need to work hard.