The Education Controversy – The Fighter

I’ll begin by asking people to take a few minutes to either watch or read Steve Jobs’ commencement address at Stanford.  Don’t worry, I’ll still be here when you finish.

Transcript of Steve Jobs’ Commencement

Done?  Good.  Now there’s a lot to be said about what Steve Jobs talked about.  It sounds fantastic and idealistic to be able to disregard the future and simply chase your passions.  Let the future figure out how all the dots connect together, your job is to provide the dots so that there is something to connect in the future.  Sounds easy enough right?  I mean, it’s so easy to look back and say “This is how everything connects”when you’ve created something as successful as Apple and Pixar.  For a lot of people, they simply want to know what about everyone else who failed to become Steve Jobs?  All of the people who chased their “dreams” and ended up failures with nothing to show but their titanic debts.

Well I would start by stating that it’s not as simple as “chasing your dreams.”  For most people who chase their “dreams,” it usually entails some type of quick rich scheme.  People borrow loans and take huge risks in order to purchase the next “hot stock” or the next “amazing investment.”   Then before they know it, they’ve lost it all to some scammer or to the sheer ignorance of what they were doing.  There’s a conventional saying in people who are smart investors, “If you are trying to get in the market when the masses are saying you should get in, it’s probably time to get out.”

Once we’ve cut out the “quick rich” population, we’re much closer to the people with actual dreams.  I know that a lot of people won’t like the fact that being rich can’t be considered a dream in my dictionary, but it’s not.  Rich means so many different things to so many different things.  For example, rich to me might mean being able to travel for 2 weeks every year to wherever I wanted without breaking the bank.  Maybe being rich to someone else means being able to eat at 5 star restaurants all the time and never cooking.  All I can say is, while money ties into many of our goals, the sheer goal of “being” rich lacks the same specificity that I discussed in my post about crafting a vision.

And now, we’re left with people with the true dreams.  At this point, the difference between those who chase after their dreams and those who don’t is the willingness to take the plunge and fight for what they want.  People who fight for their dream are those who end up being the exception.  The ones who face adversity with a smile and move forward.  These are the very people who have the inner strength necessary to rise to greatness.  After all, true inner strength comes from the ability to continue onward when the rest of the world is trying to block your way.

It’s true.  Some of the fighters fall along the way to their pursuit of their dream.  Life can be so unfair at times.  To these people, I hold you in the highest regard for taking charge of your own life and fighting to change the hand dealt to you.  To everyone else who is afraid of this: wouldn’t the chance of achieving self-fulfillment and happiness be worth the dive?

So dream big.  Fight on.  Give nothing less than your all.  Remember that the people stuck in the norm will always try and drag you back down.  You can be the exception if you have a clear vision and the will to fight.   And with more and more people breaking the norm, I’m sure that more and more of us will begin to be the change this world so desperately needs.

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6 responses to “The Education Controversy – The Fighter”

  1. butterflyxwings says :

    thanks for posting this. brings me hope and the will to fight.

  2. jennyfer23 says :

    you’ve prob read this since it was on the front page of CNN yesterday. i read it last night but i’m still thinking about it this morning.

    http://www.cnn.com/2011/10/25/opinion/granderson-what-do-you-do/index.html?hpt=hp_c1

  3. Stephanie says :

    My only qualm with this argument is that we only ever hear about the success stories (i.e., Mark Zuckerberg and Steve Jobs). What about all of the people that have sacrificed EVERYTHING and were never able to get where they want to be? You briefly mention that sometimes life is just ‘unfair.’ Is it really unfair? Or did people just not happen to have the luck and opportunity that the aforementioned people had?

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