Motivational Speaking - Stuck in the Middle with All of You
Why do we need structure? Why does the desire for the cubicle life consume us all? What is it about money and the white picket fence that dismantles our dreams, destroys our imagination and devalues the sense of adventure in people? From the time we enter kindergarten until the time we exit college we are poked and prodded and led in the direction of the average; of the middle-class. Athletic dreams are squashed at an early age save the very few exceptional talents, artistic pursuits deemed unnecessary unless you are the second-coming of Picasso or Shakespeare, traveling and seeing this incredible world first hand is to be put off in favor of your "education" and "real life". There is such an immense aversion to failing that in an attempt to shelter our children from the pain of it, we, as a society, encourage them to be average, conservative, and just like everyone else. It's as if we believe by setting our goals low enough we can all achieve perfection but perfection is not interesting. Being faulty is. Symmetry is not as exciting as asymmetry and straight is not as fun as winding.
Where's the adventure in going to school, studying all the time to get your meaningless to anyone, but yourself, "A" average, getting a job, making a good salary, raising two kids with your wife and dying after your retirement in Florida? My uncle spent eleven years traveling through Europe and Africa before coming home after getting sick in India - that man has stories to tell. What does Joe in accounting have? Tabloid headlines. People end up living their lives vicariously rather than accomplishing their goals by themselves. The worst example of this is sports parents pushing their kids, for their own personal glory, to the point of hating the sport they're playing. Sure your kid may be a champ at fifteen, but when he's a nervous wreck who can't hold a steady job or find a girlfriend who can tolerate his constant bouts of depression we'll see how proud you are of your accomplishments then.
What good is an imagination if you don't believe in it or dreams, if you don't attempt to follow them? And what's so scary about failing anyway? I do it all the time and it always makes me more interesting and more intelligent. Sure, it's uncomfortable sometimes: awkward situations, apologies for mistakes, but so what? No one can go through life without being uncomfortable ever, so why make such a fuss about it. I say develop some ideals, see the world, turn off your TV, turn on your mind and live life. And if you get all-in with bad cards have the guts to ante up again and play another hand cause who knows this time it might be rockets.
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