Everyone who ventures into the world of growth makes an effort to take on a way of thinking that most people don’t have.
Choosing to be somewhat edgier than normal, I decided to write this piece to explain what sort of mindset led me to become a legend in my own sphere and, increasingly, on an international scale.
To become successful in any fashion, much less become revered captain of industry, a certain narcissism and ruthlessness is required.
Which each passing day I feel that my dark side is somehow strengthening, but along with it, a desire to assist people bring their dreams to reality, live fulfilling lives, and build bridges and help cultures understand each other.
It’s odd, because throughout my life I’ve been taught that “being a nice person” is the most important thing. In my understanding, being nice and courteous is what’s EXPECTED of you, it isn’t a bonus or a skill and should not be treated as such.
The most important thing, in my life, is do anything it takes to fix the world or protect it from bad futures. In Jewish understanding this is the idea of “Tikkun Olam” (World Reperation), which oddly enough was a phrase that I literally DID NOT HEAR until I enrolled at Wesleyan University, despite several years in an Orthodox Jewish background (although a lot of my Orthodox friends, and rightly so, do value Tikkun Olam with great pride…and not just Rabbis, mind you!).
Here are some opinions of mine that you may not share, but I’m okay with that…
- The online polyglot community seriously needs to consider expanding languages learned.
Too often is the same set of ten languages bounced around over and over and over again.
Too many people on the online polyglot community consider the question of “usefulness” rather than asking themselves what they really want.
Too many seek outsider approval or, even worse, ask their friends what sort of languages they should be learning. (Don’t do that! Ask yourself that question instead! And I think I’ve written that on this blog before, methinks…)
Truth be told, with few exceptions, just learning popular languages without any deep motivation dominates a lot of the Facebook groups.
Again, it’s one thing to learn a language because of a genuine connection, but a lot of people just do it “to get ahead” or “out of civic duty” or are more focused on the results they read about in that Business Insider article rather than the process of getting to know a culture (which is as in-depth a process as getting to know a person).
Obviously among the best-known polyglots in the world, this almost never happens. Among my deepest friends, this doesn’t happen.
It pains me to see how Fluent in 3 Months, formerly a source of inspiration that I would visit in tears whenever I was worried that I would never learn Swedish or Hebrew well enough to be good enough to talk to anyone, has turned into a predictable array of articles that just show off a handful of the world’s most powerful languages in favor of showing the true diversity of the human spirit. It’s shameful.
I don’t encounter innovation among most polyglot communities, I just encounter the predictable and the dull, and that could change if only people were REALLY willing to do something different. Source: I became world-famous all over Palau and Greenland because I thought different.
Mostly I’m talking about Facebook communities rather than blogs and websites (and certainly not those blogs and websites belonging to friends of mine who have not only provided me inspiration but also a platform!)
- Most people will end up sacrificing their true potential for conformity or comfort
Do you really want to become a legend? Do you really want to become someone who the world and your family will be very proud of indeed?
You have to make sacrifices and think differently. It is an essential law of the universe that states that conformists never win. EVER. They never have, nor will they ever go on to do so, anywhere, for all of human history.
But which would most people rather pick? A safe group identity, or a life of shaking things up and being remembered and revered for it?
Most people are not willing to make that sacrifice. A lot of people will be unduly attached to their entertainment, to their predictable jobs, and choosing to slog away at routine rather than asking themselves “what can I do to make myself the very best?”
Granted a lot of this may come from limiting beliefs, and if you have them, throw them away without any second thoughts. The people who want to discourage you are always wrong (even if it is I myself that is discouraging you from anything, however implicitly. Don’t be discouraged!)
But I’ve seen this throughout my life. Given the choice between making valuable connections and investing in self-improvement and putting your all and living a quieter life…it’s clear which one most people want. But at the end of their life, I’ll guarantee you that all of those who chose the quieter path will regret it. Very, very deeply.
And this leads to a point that a lot of people don’t actually want to believe but I’m very convinced of. And that is…
- Most people don’t actually want success in their lives
From my preschool years I noticed that I was surrounded by people (even adults) who often would cut off their best versions of themselves with limiting beliefs. “I can’t”, “no, I don’t have the talent for that”. “I’m smart, you’re not, you can do these things, I can’t. You know that”.
The limiting belief is actually an evolutionary mechanism. Believe me, getting the wisdom and going through the process of learning all of these languages and learning more about it year after year is…painful. You find yourself surrounded by people who seem to talk about nothing, who don’t care about the world and are anything put the explorer types to whom our future and present as a species is indebted!
Plainly put, fame is painful. Talent is painful. You’ll have the weight of many people trying to drag you down. And the higher you are, the more of them you’ll get. No wonder a lot of people choose a life of non-adventure!
They might SAY they want to be successful, but aren’t willing to undertake the personal sacrifices and become the variety of character to whom success shows itself.
- If you don’t like me, you are the problem, not I
My good friends are among the smartest and well-spoken people I can imagine, ones who strive for justice, ones who are endlessly eloquent, those who think differently, bring light into the world, build bridges, build ropes to help others climb up, and ones that bring hope into the world.
I surround myself with these people and I actively seek them out. I want to learn from them and ask them for advice, share life experiences and ponder the world together, finding the newest ways in which heroism is required in the world.
And then there come times in which I attempt to start conversations with people, inquire about their journeys, their passions and how they feel great and heroic in THEIR own life…what sort of small (or big) victories they have achieved…
And sometimes the conversation gets actively shut down, sometimes they’ll choose to walk away or otherwise ignore me and give me short answers. Or worse, be explicitly mean to me, insult me based on my nationality or my job or my choices (although this has almost never happened in recent memory…)
I know where I stand in this world, and it is with the healers, the makers, and the heroes. I think as many people deserve to be in such company as possible! I think YOU deserve all the success that your deepest self dreams about, and has dreamt about for years!
If you somehow try to shut me out of your life, it is clear where you stand. You are the problem, I am not (although I know that I am very far from perfect, as are we all).
- Most people have a visceral hatred towards the type of people who avoid the dustbin of history.
Any successful person knows this. A lot of name-calling, shunning and cruelty awaits for those who think differently.
Most people not only don’t want success, they don’t really like types associated with personality traits that are associated with it.
Often I find in the world that there is a conception that smart people or project-starters or entrepreneurs or those who have acquired great talent are somehow “making up” for something, so as to turn the very idea that these people help our species and our world get ahead is actually a flaw.
A lot of people are going to take the predictable paths in life with low-risks and many of them are going to make the non-conformists and the “movers and the shakers” feel bad.
But that’s only to try to prevent them from getting ahead during the one time that they have the advantage.
Because you, O dreamer, are going to head into a legacy that will make you, your country, your family, your ancestors, your progeny and everyone who even met you once extraordinarily proud!
And then it will be worth every pain, every doubt, every calamity that you incurred along the way.
SOME CONCLUDING THOUGHTS:
I understand if you disagree with me or even want to try to dissuade me. I am gladly open to any discussion of anything that I’ve given here. What’s more, I want absolutely none of you to construe any of this as a personal attack.
Yes, I know I can be harsh at times, but the trying times of humanity right now call me to be more indignant then I ever have been. I’m not wasting the one chance of life that I get, and I know you won’t either!