I’m reading My Life and Work by Henry Ford. It’s important to read the autobiographies of GREAT MEN: primary sources being superior to secondary ones, generally speaking.
In a revealing part of the story, he discusses the first time he ever witnessed a machine other than a horse-drawn carriage. He was sitting on a wagon with his father when he saw a primitive road engine passing by. Ford—only 12 at the time—was mesmorized. Without any coaxing, he approached the engineer and began asking questions in order to learn more:
The engine had stopped to let us pass with our horses and I was off the wagon and talking to the engineer before my father, who was driving, knew what I was up to.
Nobody pushed him to learn more…he did it himself. No social programs were created to help him “find his passion”: the passion was already inside of him. In short, nature is stronger than nurture. You have a destiny with greatness or you don’t.
Note that many children would be apathetic in the same scenario. They’d be dreaming of a toy, staring at a cloud, or thinking of a fantasy. Others would be interested, but would remain seated. But not Henry Ford. He was pro-active, jumping at the opportunity to challenge his intellect.
The greatness of Henry Ford was written in his DNA.
See Related Article: You Either Have Ambition or You Don’t