May 6th, 2019
I feel like I’ve been a million people lately.
It’s like my brain has been scattered across the multiverse, and the only thing connecting it to itself is a current of anxious electricity.
I read an piece recently about the concept of excellence. The writer argued that since most of our lives are spent in the mundane, something unexpected happens to us when we’re in the presence of excellence. We react in a heightened way; we feel a wide spectrum of feelings, from inspiration to outright jealousy. Our lives are changed forever when we come in contact with the extraordinary, and it’s because of the ordinary way we live most of our lives.
Something about this really bothered me.
It was this, and I realized it by seeing my world from so many points of view: excellence is a perspective.
You could meet a woman who, on paper, has lived a very ordinary life. And the way she could tell it could be your absolute favorite story.
Conversely, you could meet a man who, by all accounts, lived an spectacular life, filled with adventure and travel, and yet the way he told it could inspire nothing more than pity.
If you say things like, “Well, when you work somewhere so long, you’re bound to get sick of it,” or, “When people are in relationships forever, they get boring and it’s not like it was at the beginning,” you are only describing your own personal outlook on life, not any law or rule.
There are people who have had jobs for decades who, despite maybe not even loving the work itself, loved waking up every day with that sense of purpose and made it more than what it was. And there are couples who have been together for over fifty years who show no signs of lost love or stagnant feelings, and (with a little work) these are all choices that people choose to make.
Greatness is great to be in the presence of. But deciding what is great is the greatest power. You decide that your work is important. You decide that the people in your life are important. You decide who and what you love, and even if you don’t sometimes, you decide what you do about it.
So be excellent, and not in spite of the mundane; make the mundane excellent because it will change your life.