A friend posted something on Facebook recently: “There’s no future in normal.”
For some reason, this struck a chord with me. Too many of us are trying to be normal. To be accepted. To NOT rock the boat. Societal and (most) cultural expectations inform us this is a good thing.
But deep down, we all know it is a path towards mediocrity.
And is that what we really want? Is that truly what you strive for? You’d probably tell me no, if I asked you the direct question.
But yet, most of us strive towards normal, because that’s what we think we are supposed to do, and our fearful instincts guide us to do.
And I know this based on the actions we all take. You may say otherwise, but we all know, it’s the actions we take that truly define who and what we are.
As we approach a new year, we’ve all just come off several weeks or reading stories of the great success stories from the past year: stories of entrepreneurs, startups, non-profits, and artists of all kinds, the people and organizations that made headlines over the past year.
And you know what? That thing that made them different? The thing that made them stand out? Got them noticed? Do you know what it was?
They didn’t do normal.
They were anything but normal.
They broke convention. Did something new. Didn’t follow societal rules and expectations. And now they are being celebrated. See how this works?
Let this be a lesson to all of us: you cannot be normal and expect to stand out. You cannot be normal and expect to create art that mystifies. You cannot be normal and expect to disrupt markets.
Let this be what you focus your thinking on as we start a new year. How can we be ANYTHING but normal? What do we have to do? How can we commit to this new mindset?
Because as we now understand: there’s no future in normal.