Do you believe that timing is everything?
Last night, I watched the final game for the Stanley Cup. Both LA Kings and the New Jersey Jets were great clubs. The amount of hard work, good coaching, and luck to get to the finals is enormous. Yet there has to be a loser and a winner – one team must win – there is only one Stanley Cup.
What was the difference? Luck. Lucky that all the factors came together when necessary for the win. The Jets, in the first period, got a 5-minute penalty and LA Kings capitalized on it with 3 goals. What if the hitting hadn’t been so hard? What if the penalty had been only two minutes? What if there had been no penalty as in the case of so many other checks. What if?
The Smartest Man in the World
‘What if’ can also present itself in other ways in our society.
Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell, The Story of Success illustrates how luck plays such an integral part in achieving success or not in any field.
One of the most poignant stories in the book is about the smartest man in the world. Few know his name. Chris Langan. Gifted, born in poverty without the home learning necessary to navigate the real world and faced insurmountable obstacles, he never reached his dream. Despite hard work and great efforts, his talent, ingenuity and genius in philosophy, mathematics and physics, there was no luck in the world for Chris Langan. Poor home life, rigid bureaucracies and no champion were the factors that derailed what could have otherwise been a brilliant career. Compare his story with Bill Gates – born to the right parents, at the right time, with access to the right equipment, meeting up with Paul Allen, and growing up during the leading edge of the technological revolution. The factors conspired to make him a billionaire.
Have you ever wondered . . . .
If you’ve ever wondered why your hard work and dedication have never paid off, read Outliers – you’ll be amazed how coincidences accumulate to destroy the future of some of the brightest and the best. So it has been through eternity and thus it shall always be.
Do you give up?
It depends on what you are giving up on. On yourself? Never, ever give up on yourself. You are the most important person alive!
So what do you do if you don’t achieve your dream?
Live. Live a life every day that you are proud to live. It might not be ideal or perfect.
It can be satisfying.
I strived, worked like mad for many years, and educated myself repeatedly. How I worked! I had the goal in mind. But, like Chris Langan, I didn’t have the formula. I had many, many successes – but not the one I wanted. Then I read Outliers.
It’s a formula – it’s luck and it’s many, many other factors which need to come together for a dream to materialize.
But life is a many faceted diamond. We are here to learn. I learned many thingson my journey. Here are some of them:
a) to be grateful every day for what I have – I have good health, food on the table and a shower with hot and cold running water without my having to haul the water from the well or gather wood to heat the water. I live in one of the most beautiful cities in the world .
b) I cannot afford the luxury of a negative thought – not one – because negative thoughts are so quickly nurtured by the negativity in our world. Staying positive every minute of every day is one of the greatest daily challenges.
c) relationships take time to build especially the one with myself. Loving oneself and being selfish about crafting the life I want is critical to a happier and fulfilling life.
d) life must be crafted – planned – and developed otherwise others will pay attention to my life for me. People will take whatever they can get or commandeer my life according to their ideas and values. I know solid boundaries are incredibly important based on my values – mine – not other people’s. I now know the most important value of all – loving myself and the life I’m living – caring for it – nurturing it as did the people who cared for me as a baby. It’s tough maintaining those boundaries sometimes so the values I live must be real to me – life is an inside job!
e) live it up! I love vacations now – travel – and I love my curiosity – it’s an exciting world filled with fascinating people, things, places and discoveries. I’m getting involved in my community, my world – it’s so fantastic! And now I see the mistakes of the past were great lessons – we live in a world of contrast – good and bad – without the contrast, it would be a boring existence! Both my successes and mistakes are a part of who I am today and I am proud of that person I know so intimately!
Will you join me?
Will you join me and define the right life for you? I hope so – and even if timing is not on your side, life can still be a great adventure of discovery and fun! You’ll all of a sudden become quite aware of time -