I was having a conversation the other day with a friend and mentioned how thinking you’re a bad writer, IMHO, is a good thing. She laughed. This particular friend laughs very easily. It’s one of her best traits. She didn’t seem aware of the benefits of ranking so low on the totem pole of life. Of course, with very little encouragement, I continued on and explained my point of view on the subject. I could also write a blog post on why you shouldn’t invite opinions from opinionated people, but there’s only so many hours in the day.
To give a very clear picture, I’d like to use the analogy of a horse race. When you’re taking down the win, you think you’re awesome. Everyone else thinks you’re awesome, too. You’re top of the hay heap and life’s good. But maybe, just maybe, if you’re a lap or so ahead of the crowd and rounding in for your tenth win, you don’t run you’re fastest anymore. Maybe you hang out grazing a little longer, while everyone else is exercising on your off days.
Now let’s imagine you’re in the middle of the herd. You aren’t the best but there’s some loser lagging behind you so you don’t feel so bad about yourself. Plus, you’ve got all this company. Tons of horses are hanging out in the middle. You’ve got your buds, some pretty mares are checking you out. Not a bad place to coast for a while.
Then, the dreaded last place. All you see are tail ends and your eye is twitching because you’re getting dirt kicked into your face. You work harder than anyone and you feel like the loser last place proclaims you to be. The only horses bothering you are pity sniffs or a couple trying to lose some flies, because flies are always attracted to the biggest piles of poop.
So why in the world would I say that it’s good? Because being that loser gives you a drive the others never get to experience. You tasted the bitter pill of not being good enough, not being even mediocre, and because of that, if you can get past the overwhelming urge to pack it in, if you can find the strength to keep going and not be a quitter, you’ll work harder and longer than anyone else and you will succeed because you’ve gained an edge. Life isn’t always about who’s got the most talent, money or intelligence; It’s also about who has the most heart. Just remember once you get your win, don’t lose your edge and start hanging out in the pasture too long.
“Victory is never as sweet as when you’re coming from behind.”— Donna Augustine, Jinxed