I’m not normal

I hate the idea of being average, normal, or whatever other word you want to use to describe mediocrity. When I was younger, I used to care about fitting in, but I just don’t anymore. You know why? Because I came to the realization when I was studying “great people”. No one great was ever average. All of them were weird or eccentric, either personality wise or through their actions. They all did things that were way beyond the level of “normal” for their time. Steve Jobs is well known for traveling to India to search for an “enlightenment” guru and LSD usage during his teens and 20s. Warren Buffet started investing at the age of 11. FREAKING 11! Do you know what you were doing at 11?! Probably not investing. Also, I’m pretty sure if Lady Gaga wasn’t famous, all of her freaking stunts would have landed her in a mental hospital. Now the real question is, did fame make her weird or did fame only magnify whom she was?

Normal people don’t climb Mount Everest. Normal people don’t put their life on the line to be the first person to the moon. Normal people don’t run 100-mile courses. Normal people don’t put countless of hours into their craft for a tiny chance at succeeding. Normal people don’t launch billion dollar companies. Normal people don’t chase their dreams.

“Here’s to the crazy ones, the misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the round pegs in the square holes… the ones who see things differently — they’re not fond of rules… You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them, but the only thing you can’t do is ignore them because they change things… they push the human race forward, and while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius, because the ones who are crazy enough to think that they can change the world, are the ones who do.” – Steve Jobs

UPDATED: I wrote this a while back and I want to amend this. Though I still agree with everything I have written, I wanted to add that there is nothing wrong with wanting to be normal and fitting in. I have come to the realization that everyone has their own path, goals, and aspirations. I want to warn people that standing up against the grain is a hard task. There is a certain isolation when you’re on the extreme end of the bell curve.

Business, Relationships, and Running

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*REPOST FROM 12/5/12*

Thinking about time management one night, I soon realized the similarities between a relationship and a business. Both take a huge initial investment of time in the beginning, but require less and less “work” as time goes on. As in, you’re no longer trying to learn everything about each other or trying to do everything in your business. You have learned to trust and delegate. Thus, it becomes more about maintenance. Both, relationships and businesses, go through stages. Both have a beginning and an end; however, if you are lucky you will build something that will last a lifetime.

One thing I have realized is it doesn’t really matter how many failed relationships or failed businesses you have been a part of. It only takes one special person or one successful business to change your life.

Too many people settle too early. Settling is easy; to continue to put yourself out there and take chances is hard. Every time you reach out to do something new, you run the risk of losing what you have already accomplished. Every time you end a bad relationship, you run the risk of being lonely, and I’m sure most would agree that being lonely is hard. However, I’m also a believer that anything worth having is hard to obtain. As cliche as this sounds, you’ll know when it’s the right one.

I recently finished a half-marathon, and I’m training for a full marathon in April. It was an experience that I will never forget because I learned so much from it. One of the things I have learned was that once you cross that finish line, everything was worth it. The five to six months of training, the 20-30 miles each month, it was all worth it. It was worth the 2+ hours of exhausting, sweat-dripping pain I endured throughout the run. In fact, it made it the journey that much better. All of the work and training became trials and tribulations in my small “story” to the finish line. If the race had turned out to be an easy run, I guarantee you that it would not have meant as much as it did. The fact that I felt like I could collapse at any moment during the last two to three miles made crossing that finish line memorable.

I kept thinking to myself, if I had given up at any time during the race, I would have never been able to experience that. All of my pain and struggles would remain just that, just pain and struggles. So, if you ever feel like you just can’t handle it any more, or that you’re in unbearable pain, find a reason to keep going because once you cross that line, all of that pain will make it that much sweeter.

I do the things I do because I see the running, the reading, the self-analyzing, the critical thinking, and self-development as part of a bigger race. Bigger than a marathon, a run for life.