Never Quit Becoming

I told my friend not to expect my writing to be much good. My excuse was that I’m just not a good writer. Never have been.

“So become a good writer.” He replied. Just like that. “If you want your book to be great, you’ll have to be a good writer. Otherwise, don’t bother. Because it’ll fall short of the magnificent work this raw material is made for.”

So true. Everything I can do now, I learned. Even breathing was something I learned and had to keep working on. My health condition made every breath a struggle.

I can’t tell you how many successful people and executives I’ve met that have unimpressive schooling. But they never stopped becoming someone better in their adult years. Meanwhile, many with a fancy degree that had the initial lead are now working for someone whom they thought would never catch up. Look up any successful person on Wikipedia and you’ll be surprised of many of their backgrounds.

All of us are who we are today by becoming something different from a helpless glob of infant. So at what point do we start thinking that growing is unnatural, when it is in fact the opposite? Is a degree, a title, or an age the cutoff point for learning and growing? Sure seems like it for many people, doesn’t it?

Many adults “experience” a lot of things. But how many of these experiences actually changes you? Do you approach classes or team competitions now with goals and the same accountability as when you were in high school or college? Or do you travel and say “oh that was fun” but end up not knowing any more of the culture and people as before your adventure? Doing doesn’t always mean becoming.

What life would you miss out on if you stopped becoming someone more?

If I didn’t learn survival skills on my own every day of my life, my disease would’ve taken my life long ago.  All through school, I always had the best grades in Biology class.  Classmates assumed I was smart in that subject.  Wrong.  I studied Biology 10x harder than anyone else, even those who’s grades were about as good as mine.  With my mysterious disease and every doctor having failed, I took it upon myself to become an expert at biology.  Grades and the time I spent on it didn’t matter.  It didn’t matter if it was hard for me to understand or that it took 10x longer for me to study.  Other patients think, “I can’t be as smart as a doctor.  I’ll just let them handle it. ” or “It’s the doctor’s job to know, not mine.”  Almost everyone I know who thinks like that have suffered because even the best doctors can’t possibly know everything.

I’ve said this many times, one of my degrees is Mathematical Economics, but I hated finance in college. Spent zero time on it. Then, on my deathbed with a laptop I could barely control with my fingernail, I learned stock trading. It was one of the few things I could do with minimal typing and clicks. Each keystroke and click was excruciating. I would temporarily blank out from the pain. The subject matter I detested has become such a big part of my life as I’ve gone on to trade options, futures and consult for Wall Street professionals and even teach this stuff.

I became something I’d never imagine I could be. I never thought I would be producing videos either. How wrong I was. I should just stop giving myself limits because these limiting beliefs don’t hold up.

As my friend reminded me, we have always been growing, always becoming. If we’re not becoming someone better, stronger, we’re becoming someone worse and weaker. We all have an inherent ability to learn and grow, whatever that may be. Different people pick up different skills faster, but nothing is out of any of our reach unless we choose to be worse, not better.

Adapting. Changing. Growing. Becoming. It is human nature. Don’t deny yourself of your natural progression.

About this entry