One of the aspects of writing I find to be most intriguing is the act of critiquing my own work. When I re-trace the steps I’ve taken through the blogoshpere, I strive to do so with the utmost objectivity relative to my appraisal of each piece. I suppose that among the elements of my expression over which I lament most is the pessimistic tone that I’m prone to take. Although it would be disingenuous for me to thrust synthetic optimism upon the reader, simply for the sake of reppin’ the “glass is half full club,” I still think that, at times, I tread uncomfortably close to the line between realism and pessimism. As such, I think it’s only right to build on one of the life dynamics through which I manage to find hope. When human potential is systematically harnessed for the express purpose of achievement within a given cipher, greatness is manifested. The existence of extraordinary people shows and proves that the next titan of our civilization is always on his or her way, and will surface in his or her own good time.
Personally, I’m rather judicious when it comes to viewing someone as great. In order to live up to such a description, a person needs to positively impact the world through sustained excellence in a given field to a degree that very few others, if any ever have. When such a body of work is compiled, a variety of qualities coalesce breeding a formula for ultimate success. Generally, over the course of a person’s life or career they will encounter numerous setbacks, moments of doubt, and failures along the way. What differentiates great people from underachievers is the response that such tribulations elicit from them. While the average person would fold under pressure, the great ones rise up and find a way to get the job done by tapping into the concentrated potency of human will. Such individuals are able to consistently triumph in the face of adversity do to their inertial confidence in their ability to do so. The confidence emerges from recognition of the nexus between cognitive fortitude and the effort expended to elevate it. Simply put, the battle tested are prepared to overcome. Unfortunately, we live in a society that views greatness through a rather jaded scope. Even more distressing is the fact that we’ve historically reserved space within said pantheon for individuals who made their names via war and destruction. This is a glaring illustration of the base level narcissism that lies within us all, and is more pronounced in some. Only in the devil’s civilization could a person be praised for his or her ability to subjugate others. I find this notion to be so repulsive that I intentionally added an ethical component to my definition of greatness. As far as I’m concerned one must be just and true in order to fit the bill.
I think the most common denominator among the vanguard of achievers is a strong work ethic. There’s simply no way to circumvent the due diligence required to accomplish anything major. Work tempers an individual psychologically and emotionally for the journey toward completion of a monumental undertaking. However, before even attempting something that seems virtually impossible one must have the ability to visualize. This involves taking an idea and seeing it come to fruition in the mind prior to is actualization. Once the end result takes shape in the mind of a driven individual it becomes a possibility. That possibility is the fulcrum which supports the leveraging of whatever resources are necessary for translation into reality. Contrary to popular belief, every master of this process is not famous. Furthermore, fame is not a pre-requisite for the greatness constitution. The achievements themselves are what count rather than the attention that they garner.
Among the great tragedies of the present day is the fact that we do an abominable job of arming our youth with the basic skills necessary to scratch the surface of greatness. We don’t familiarize them with the idea of trial and error so they grow up afraid to try anything new. Additionally, instead of allowing them to fail and reap the benefit of having done so by extracting the lessons embedded in the experience, we tell them they did great and that it’s ok, even when they were lousy and laid an egg. This plants seeds of mediocrity in their minds which grow into patterns of weak effort and unfulfilled dreams. At some point along the way holding children to standards and demanding that they do their best became synonymous with fanaticism and virtual abuse. We’ve gotten to the point where we just shrug our shoulders and say “oh well, maybe he/she is just not that talented…” Fortunately, everyone doesn’t operate according to this trend. There are still parents who dare to push their children to constantly strive for excellence, and manifest the wisdom to put them in position to do so. Such individuals possess the supreme foresight which impels them to make the sacrifice necessary to enroll their children in the best schools regardless of the cost. They muster the energy to support their involvement in constructive extra-curricular activities that build character and teach life lessons while also offering opportunities to have fun. The fact is there are legitimately great people stationed across the globe who show and prove everyday that all is not lost. They are dedicated teachers, coaches, mentors, and family members who refuse to let the next history maker falter. I send a shout of sincere love and peace to these chosen individuals for making our world go around. I’ve been lucky enough to be influenced by some of you and if there were no you, there definitely would be no me…