The right problem to work on
Is the problem in front of you the right one to be working on? Frustratingly in school the answer is almost always yes, in life the answer is often no.
The difference between artificial problems created by the curriculum and actually interesting things, that is, things that solve human needs, is huge. I was never really interested in linear algebra or calculus before I got interested in applying machine learning. Most kids are naturally interested in things they can apply. It makes sense why the human mind would have a bias for this.