In the game of thrones book or tv series, there was this quote by the Lannisters. The quote was “The lion does not concern himself with the opinions of the sheep.” Ok I haven’t really seen the tv series and I’ve only read the first few chapters of the first book. I maybe taking this quote out of context. But if you like, you can just replace the word “lion” with “wolf”.
Anyway, I was in my old college and I was resting at the cafeteria. A group of students were talking. One guy got a 65 on his test in biology. He was saying before that, “I am going to cure cancer.” He was saying he was going to invent something that will revolutionize the medical field. Everyone was laughing at him. Everyone was teasing him because he got a 65 in his test. I can tell, he was NOT the smartest in the group. He was most likely the slowest there. “How are you going to cure cancer if you have a 65?” “There are millions of people with better grades than you that have failed and cannot do it. You cannot do it, you are not special and have no talent at all. What makes you think you can do it?” Maybe not as direct as that but it was the idea. They were making fun of him and in the end, he said that he will change majors because he is not good in biology.
Why couldn’t people encourage others or why can’t they just tell him to study more or put more effort in his studies, why do people would rather discourage others and would rather see them fail than see them succeed? The answer is that it is just human nature. You can have the most noble of noble goals and people would rather see you fail than succeed. What is more noble than curing cancer or making this planet a better place for others to live in? Goals like that are so noble and yet people would rather see you give up than succeed.
When people see others climbing or trying to improve themselves or trying to have a better life, they see this as a competition to their way of life, to their way of thinking, to the decisions that they have made all of their lives. They have already given up on themselves, and they want others to give up on themselves also. They want you to give up so they can tell themselves they made the right decisions all through out their lives. So when people see others climbing, getting out of the trenches, their reaction is not to be inspired or try to do the same thing. Most of the time it is not going to be, “he is doing well and climbing well, I should do the same thing. I can do better than him.” It is usually not like that. It is often going to be, “oh that guy is climbing, he is trying to be better than everyone else, we need to drag him down back to our level, we need to make sure he never attempts to climb or become better ever again, we need to drag him down with everything we have.”
When I told myself I will go for the biggest dreams and biggest goals I can have, I was faced with so many people trying to make me give up. I heard so many reasons, a lot of them to belittle me, point out my flaws, and some are disguised as good intentions or that they are looking out for me which is why they need me to give up. My last goal is to win the Nobel Peace Prize, and it is the most noble of noble goals, its so positive, and amazing but people would rather see me give up and not try at all. Except for my friends that I meet for TGIFs, they always encourage me. Anyway, I’m going to list ideas and thoughts on why you should climb down, stay where you are and not go for your dreams. I have practically heard a lot of them.
Why go though all the pain and agony if you can stay where you are and be comfortable?
Why go for it when it is not worth the pain?
Why go for it when there are a million ways you can fail?
Why go for it when there is no guarantee you will succeed?
Why go for it when every effort, and time that you have invested could all be for nothing?
Why go for it when money cannot make you happy?
Why go for it when even if you succeed, what would you gain from it? Not much.
Why go for it when no one cares if you achieve your goal, it will be a momentarily happiness for lots of effort and pain?
Let’s say you become the best or you cure cancer or they build a statue about you after you die? Who cares? Can you enjoy that? You are dead? Even if you have a legacy, you are already dead and you cannot really benefit from it or get happiness from it or feel anything.
Do we really care who made the first penicillin?
Why go for it when even if they build a statue for you to symbolize your accomplishments, the human race can be wiped out by a disease, the sun can blow up at any day, if there are aliens, they most likely invented whatever you invented a long time ago?
In time, our galaxy is colliding with another galaxy so whatever the human race becomes or whatever we achieve, it will all be gone in time. Everything will be destroyed.
There is no point in becoming better, in achieving the best, or making a name yourself. It is not worth it. Not worth the pain, the time or standing back up after failure.
Why not live now and forget the future? You will be happier.
Why go through all the pain, effort, and etc when there is really no point? Why? Why should you do it? Why?
Why? Can you answer that question? Why? You cannot because there is really no reason to do it.
If you ever go for your goals or dreams, you will get these arguments and questions thrown at you. It can be different or in different forms but the ideas are the same. I really have no meaningful or well thought out or amazing answer. I’ll give the answer to the question “why” but I tend to look at these differently also.
Why not make the most money you can make in this lifetime?
Why not be the best you can be?
Why not become someone amazing?
Why not? It is my pain, and time, why not?
Why not see where your limitations are?
Why not try to achieve the most you can achieve?
Why not love and be loved the best you can?
Why not give your everything for your goals and dreams?
Why not see how far your feet can take you?
Why not see how far your mind can take you?
Why not see how far your body can take you?
Why not see how much your mind can learn?
Why not see what your capabilities are?
Why not see how amazing you can be?
You will see by asking “why” and “why not”, there is really no right answer? The right answer is the answer that you tell yourself.
Why go through all that pain and uncertainty to have a chance to become better or be amazing? I would answer, “It is what I want. Because I want to do it. It is my life and I am not hurting anyone, I will do what I want with it.”
Why not be the best you can be? I would answer, “it is because it is what I want. I want to sit on a couch, watch tv, know that I will have a paycheck every two weeks, have certainty, I want easy stuff. I don’t want anything hard.”
You can choose whatever answer you want and it is always correct. You only have one life. You are only given a finite amount of time on planet Earth. Do whatever you want to do with the time given to you while trying not to hurt anyone. It is your time. It is yours. You can do whatever you want with it. I chose to keep improving and become the best version of myself or best I can be. It is what I want to do with my time. Progress, improvement, and new experiences are the things that make me happy. It does not matter if I experience pain, failures, setbacks, and etc. I know what makes me happy, I know what I want, I know what to do with my time, and I am going for the things that I want. No one can tell me otherwise.
The lion does not concern himself with the opinions of the sheep. You should not care what other people think. You need to care about what you think. Let’s say you are feeling good, your hair looks good, your face looks smooth, your clothes make you look hot and you feel gorgeous. One of your coworkers saw you and said, “you look ugly today.” Another person said, “yeah, you look ugly.” You got mad at them. You cursed them out and got into a fight with them.
You know what that action says about you? It says that the opinion of others is more important than the opinion you have of yourself. You got mad because of what they say. You forgot your thoughts and what you think about the way you look. Same thing with dreams. If people tell you that you cannot do it but you believe that you can, then just go for it. You really have to protect your mind, and thoughts because a lot of people out there will destroy anything positive about you. A lot of people do not want to see you happy or smiling or succeeding. You need to become a lion and not care at all because the way you see yourself and your beliefs are far more important than what others see you as.
If I was that guy that wanted to cure cancer, I would take care of that dream. A friend of mine quoted Will Smith, he said “protect your dreams”. Here is the clip. It is so true. You have to protect it. The fire and passion inside you is just a spark. People will kill that spark if you do not protect it. It will never turn into a fire or something amazing if you do not put fuel on it. Just decide on what you are going to do and just do it. Wake up everyday with passion and fire in your eyes. Everyone wants to have that.
In my point of view, he has more chances of curing cancer than anyone. What does he lack? He lacks knowledge. The school teaches you knowledge but they give you a time limit to learn that knowledge. You only have 3 months. But what if you have more time? What if he has more time? What if it takes him 1 year to learn what his friends would take to learn in 3 months? What if he can get the knowledge that the school teaches him with twice the amount of time? What if he graduates in 8 years rather than 4? It does not matter. Get the knowledge then keep learning. His friends will stay with the knowledge they have in 4 years. It may take him twice as much but he can keep improving and getting better. Once he has the knowledge, what is more important is the imagination. What road can you take or what experiments can you do to get closer to curing cancer. Knowledge is not going to let you cure cancer. Our knowledge does not cover a 100% cure of cancer. We need imagination for that. Knowledge is something we can get in time. Imagination is not.
He has a lot of advantages. He is young, he is healthy, he has time, he wants it. He has a lot of things going for him. He has a chance to find the cure for cancer. He has more potential than any of his friends. He has youth. He could do it. If he wakes up wanting to achieve it everyday, he has lots of chances. He can get closer to that goal than anyone.
Like I said, if you have dreams, you have to be strong or else people will tear it apart with no mercy. They will tear your dreams apart while thinking they are doing good and doing you a favor. Your ascent to the top is threatening to most people. It is not because you are special or have talent but because you wanted to be different. You wanted to take the road filled with uncertainty. This road is not something many people can go through and they would rather see people they know be the same than take that road. People tell themselves that you need to be special or have talent or been given great intellect to achieve something amazing. They tell themselves this so that they do not need to reach higher or have any ambition. But if you are normal, average and maybe you are less intelligent or less special than they are, and if you achieve something they want to achieve, then their whole belief system and things they tell themselves will no longer be valid. They will have to create other mental loopholes to explain your success.
You need to be strong. The lion does not concern himself with the opinions of the sheep. You have to be a lion.