Talents are natural skills and abilities. It may seem like you’re born with them, or at least you learn them very quickly. Thus, we often call people “naturally talented”.
In this list, I’ll outline some examples of talents to help you think through what your talents might be … and maybe some things you’re not particularly talented at.
You can put these talents on a resume or a college application essay. You could also just list them to help you get a better idea of who you are and maybe even what jobs you might be good at! Let’s get into the list!
List of Talent Examples
1. Acting – Actors have the talent of taking on a character persona and sticking to it during a conversation or, more commonly, during a play, film or television show.
2. Comedy – Comedians need to be able to read the room, deliver a joke at the right pace and tone, and of course have an excellent sense of observational humor.
3. Dancing – Some people are naturally talented dancers while others struggle with this! You can also include formal dance here like ballet or salsa dance.
4. Graphic Design – Graphic designers are artists who use digital technology to create their artworks, which often end up on advertising materials or even television shows and video games.
5. Magic – Magicians have the ability to deceive people’s eyes and minds! They can make people think they’re capable of earth-defying tricks.
6. Painting – This can be broken down into fine art painting, interpretive painting, modern art, and so on.
7. Playing an Instrument – Instruments can include guitar, piano, flute, drums, and so on.
8. Pottery – A calming art, this talent is useful if you want to sell pots, pans, cups, etc.
9. Singing – As with dancing, some are naturally talented and have ‘an ear for music’ while others struggle. But, of course, the ability to sing can be learned.
10. Woodwork – Woodworkers can use the fine motor skills in their hands to create beautiful furniture and household items.
11. Balance – You need excellent balance to be able to participate in gymnastics or even snowboarding!
12. Coordination – Coordination refers to your ability to control your movements. A person with good hand-eye coordination is likely good at catching, while a person with good foot coordination would be a good soccer player.
13. Jumping – People with the skill of jumping high can become excellent basketballers, high jumpers, or even goal keepers in soccer.
14. Rhythm – People with good rhythm can be good dancers, but also might be better musicians. Rhythm is a typical example of something that seems to be an in-built talent rather than a learned skill (although I’m sure you can learn to get better rhythm!).
15. Running – People who are talented runners can compete in running events or even sports like football, soccer, and lawn hockey.
16. Skating – If you’re a talented skater, you can participate in sports like figure skating and ice hockey.
17. Swimming – A talented swimmer is someone who seems to be very comfortable in water and learns to swim very easily, as if they were born with this type of skill!
18. Throwing – Many sports require people to have the talent of throwing. This includes sports like baseball, football, and shotput.
Academic and Resume Talents
19. Brainstorming – People who are good at brainstorming will want to put this on their resume! It’s a skill that requires you to approach a topic from many different perspectives to see the best solutions to a problem.
20. Entrepreneurialism – An entrepreneurial person is always looking for ways to make money. They often see opportunities where others see risks and are open to taking on a challenge, hoping to reap the potential rewards for their effort.
21. Mathematical Thinking – Some people are naturally talented at thinking through numbers, statistics, and figures. But others just can’t get their head around it. So if you can think mathematically, this is a great talent to have!
22. Multi-Lingualism – A person who can speak multiple languages is going to be very desirable for an employer in this multicultural world!
23. Problem Solving – A problem solver is someone who identifies a problem and goes about addressing it. If you’re a natural problem solver, chances are you’ll be a desirable employee!
24. Reading – To be a good reader, you need to be able to read fast while also comprehending everything that is written. If you’re good at reading, you’ll be able to learn a lot and go far in life! (Read also: The Importance of Reading).
25. Researching – Good researchers can find information on a topic using things like the internet, phone calls, and the library.
26. Storytelling – If you’re good at storytelling, you’ll be able to tell your own story well in a job interview. But, you’ll also be able to craft a good sales narrative for a future employer (or your own business!)
27. Strategic Thinking – A person who can think strategically is good at planning ahead and understanding the best ways to proceed after weighing up the risks and contextual factors.
28. Teaching – A lot of people think anyone can teach, but a talented teacher has the ability to simplify complex ideas so anyone can understand them. To do this, teachers use a range of proven teaching strategies.
29. Work Ethic – Work ethic is the ability to work hard and be honorable, trustworthy, and reliable to work with. These people will make sure the job will get done!
30. Writing – A person who is a talented writer can be a very desirable candidate for many jobs – like journalism, being an academic, or someone who writes pitches for clients.
31. Caring for Others – A person who is good at caring for others would make a good nurse, teacher, or parent! If you’re a caring person, you might have high emotional intelligence.
32. Leadership – If you’re a talented leader, you are able to motivate people, and you can identify other people’s talents and help them to achieve their own personal goals. You might also need to delegate tasks and ensure a group is managed fairly and justly.
33. Listening – Many of us are terrible listeners. We’re too keen to share our own thoughts rather than listening to others. A person who is a good listener has the patience to sit and hear others and care about what they say. You could use active listening strategies to improve your listening skills.
34. Public Speaking – A person who is a talented public speaker will be able to stand in front of a crowd and command their attention. They know how to control their pace and tone of voice to keep people engaged.
35. Teamwork – A person who is good at teamwork can both listen and contribute in equal measure. They are good at making compromises, communicating, and brainstorming in a group.
36. Communication – Some people seem to be naturally good at communication while others tend to make too many assumptions. If you’re bad at communicating, you might forget that you told someone something (or didn’t tell them). But a good communicator breaks things down, explains them slowly and clearly, and doesn’t miss important points, so that listeners understand.
37. Humor – When you have a natural understanding of what is funny and what isn’t, you’ll be much better at entertaining people! A humorous person seems to have this talent built-in so you either have a good sense of humor or … well, struggle to understand jokes! But, of course, humor is a very subjective thing.
38. Intuition – When you have good intuition, you’re able to understand things without having to go through logical reasoning to get to your realization. You often pick up small signals that give you a sense of what is true and what is not true very early on before you have all the data.
39. Money Management – A person who is talented at money management might be able to spend wisely but also invest wisely. A talented investor, for example, will know where to place their money so their wealth grows.
40. Organization – A person who is talented at organization is going to be able to manage a lot of different thing at once. They’ll know where everything is and will be able to retrieve either things or information with ease.
41. Patience – A person who has excellent patience will be able to sit through something that might be boring or tedious. A patient parent or teacher can also sit and wait while a child or student really works through difficult concepts and comes to a realization.
42. Punctuality – A person who is punctual always turns up on time to planned events. Punctuality is considered a sign that you respect other people and their time.
43. Resilience – If you have resilience, you’re able to bounce back from setbacks and forge ahead through adversity. You don’t give up easily and work hard to achieve your goals.
44. Resourcefulness – A resourceful person is able to find ways to solve problems using the tools available to them, such as the internet, tools, or even by finding other people who can help out.
45. Self-Reflection – A person who has good reflective skills is able to pause and think about their own strengths and weaknesses. After completing a task, you might turn around and reflect on how you can learn from your experience to always be improving.
46. Staying Calm – A person who is talented at staying calm has a big advantage in life. I think this is a talent because some people are ‘born with it’ while others really struggle. If you’re good at staying calm, you’re hard to get angry and you can handle a lot of pressure.
47. Time Management – A person with good time management is able to plan out their hours, days, and months to ensure they remain productive the whole time.
Related Required Skills For Students And Employees
Here are some other skills you might need to be able to demonstrate as a successful employee or college student:
This list of talent examples is by no means a complete list. There are countless talents out there. Anything that you appear to be naturally good at could be a talent of yours. Once you’ve listed your best talents, you can get a better sense of who you are and how you might be able to show-off your greatest aptitudes and abilities to teachers, employers, friends, and family.
Dr. Chris Drew is the founder of the Helpful Professor. He holds a PhD in education and has published over 20 articles in scholarly journals. He is the former editor of the Journal of Learning Development in Higher Education. [Image Descriptor: Photo of Chris]