What is the line between extraordinary and ordinary? perhaps it can be best summarised as those who accept the world as it is and those who change the world.
We are biologically programmed to be part of a tribe and we will do anything to make sure we fit in with that tribe. Even if that means accepting the ordinary when we want to do the extraordinary.
The title of this short thought was first coined and made famous by the combat sports athlete Conor McGregor. It debuted as a somewhat battle cry at the end of his latest contest where he was victorious once more. He was letting the world know that although he and his fellow compatriots come from backgrounds that the world views as ordinary, they are here to do the extraordinary.
You could view his statement as somewhat aggressive, but in my view it is more of an affirmation to himself that he won’t be just another cog in the wheel. Conor’s mindset is on changing that world or maybe even breaking the wheel to mould it into his own. Which if we look at this career since, maybe you could say he succeeded in this mission.
We can learn from this philosophy too.
I’m sure like me, many of you want to make a difference in the world. You want to do extraordinary things but find yourself conflicted with your biological instincts to fit in with a tribe, which might mean accepting the ordinary.
Generally, you would have two options with this in either finding a new tribe that has your same vision or be the change that shows that tribe the enormity of the possible.
The lesson here is that we have a choice.
We have a choice when we start a new job or a new project. Do we just want to take part or do we want to take over? Now I don’t mean take over in the sense of a Genghis Khan style. The meaning of take part can be translated to your own definition of success, which is hopefully not tearing through cities but you get my drift.
We can choose to take part, accept the ordinary and not disrupt the tribe. This is totally fine if this makes you happy. If there were not those amongst us who made this choice then we would have a very unbalanced society.
However for those who don’t just want to take part, consider what can you do to shape change? how will you take over and create a world which works for you and improves the lives of others?
Throughout history, those who chose not to just take part but take over have shaped the course of our society. Just look at Steve Jobs and Jonny Ive with their endless line of beautiful world changing innovations that have shaped the way the world connects with each other over the past 15 years.
I can also not mention Steve Jobs, without also spotlighting Bill Gates with his work at Microsoft that took over the market. Microsoft continue to innovate for change to this day and we have all regularly come into contact with one of their products in the past 30 years.
So, I’m not saying that you need to build the next Apple, Microsoft or become a combat sports star.
I’m saying that we all have a choice.
We don’t have to accept the ordinary. It’s okay to be different, it’s okay to want to change the world and shape your own version. You can be extraordinary and take over in your own way.
Consider these words the next time you embark on a new chapter – are you here to take part or are you here to take over?