Sometimes You Just Have to Swing For the Fences

The sad reality is that most people you will find yourself surrounded by in life are what can only be described as naysayers. Try to do anything that others do not understand, and you will be bombarded with a deluge of reasons as to why your idea is too risky or otherwise not worth taking on.

Recently I had a conversation with a friend of mine who relayed an experience that he had in college. His statistics professor made a statement that, statistically speaking; the majority of the students in the class would ultimately have an income and net worth within five percent of their parents in their lifetime.

What type of message does this give to the student?

This is a prime example of the lack mentality, negative, limiting programming that we as a society are bombarded by on a daily basis in the media, movies, and television. We begin to accept this nonsense.

“That’s just how it is”

“That’s life”

“Life sucks and then you die”

All of these ideas, though sadly mantras of today’s society, need not be true of yours, or anyone else’s situation.

While the message delivered by that professor is part of the problem, the more troublesome fact is that his statistics are correct.

Now, let’s reframe that for one second.

Let’s look at the kid in the class whose parents are wealthy and very successful. Where will he or she be in their lifetime?

Statistically speaking, they will probably end up with a net worth close to their parents. Not a bad deal huh?

Now, will that be as a result of a trust fund, inheritance, or taking over the family business?


Or will that student blaze a trail and do something epic on their own that will get them there?

If the latter is the case, it would more than likely be the result of the programming that they received growing up in a wealthy household with people who feel and believe totally different about money and success.

We develop our beliefs largely as a result of our environment, particularly the beliefs of those around us, and particularly during our formative years. Who does this sound like?

If you said family you are correct.

For most of us, family represents the single most influential source of belief. We either adopt beliefs similar to those of our family, or rebel and adopt a contrary position. Either path represents a polluted direction that can lead us to believe things that may severely limit us in life.

So can the kid who grew up in a poor household rise above, and become a billionaire mogul? Of course. I’m sure you can think of a few off of the top of your head who fit that bill.

Of course, they are the minority when it comes to the super rich, with the majority coming from wealthy families to begin with, but the fact of the matter is that they are there. As a matter of fact, we hear much more about the rags to riches tales than those who continue a tradition of wealth and success because humans love a hero’s journey tale. Basically the rougher life one had prior to making it big, the more we want to hear about it.

So, what is the message here?

Chances are, we aren’t going to move forward much more than what we are accustomed to in life unless we do things that seem extremely risky, unordinary, or outright weird to many of those around us.

I promise you that if you set out to affect massive change for the better in your life, or seek greatness, with extremely high standards in any aspect of your existence, you will find no shortage of people to tell you why not to do it. Additionally you will receive unsolicited advice en masse from the same people as to what you should do instead.

Go to school

Get a good job

Find a nice girl/guy; we all have faults

Get a nice economical car to get from point A to point B

Save your money in a “safe” 401k

Don’t get “too big”

You look fine, beauty is one the inside

Money is the root of all evil

What ever happened to swinging for the fucking fence?

Only true baseball fanatics can tell you who is the lifetime leader in RBI’s or base hits, but anyone can tell you who belted the ball over the fence more than any other man in history.

This from a kid who was taught as a kid not to seek glory, to bunt, to beat the throw, to intentionally walk the heavy hitter instead of pitching him inside and besting him with my fastball. This was real advice from my father whose intentions were absolutely the best. He wanted to see me avoid disappointment, make a nice, secure life for myself, and settle down. He didn’t agree when I decided to enlist in the Army at seventeen to go throw myself out of planes and go to war.

I’m not saying that there is anything wrong with being conservative, not over extending yourself, and seeking security more than anything else.

What I am saying is that in order to push past what you know, you have to do things that those around you who mean the most to you simply will not understand. Those who support you will be there to back you, those who don’t aren’t necessarily doing it because they don’t love you or don’t care, but simply because they don’t understand. What you want to do is something that they would be uncomfortable with, and that prevents them from being able to release their projected fears and be supportive.

Don’t worry about it. Show them. Make them proud.

As much as my Dad wanted to see me bunt, he still went apeshit every time I ignored his advice and belted one over the fence after my second strike out of the game.

Remember, most big hitters also strike out quite a bit. Batting .300 will get you in the hall of fame, so don’t be afraid to choke up, keep your eye on that ball and hit that motherfucker deep.

An epic, succesful life is unatainable without a level of risk that most simply can’t stomach. Accept those who don’t understand, forgive them, and whatever you do don’t hold a grudge and refuse them autographs after you’ve done what they said you couldn’t or shouldn’t.

I mean that’s just not nice.



2 Responses

  1. Pingback: Swing For the Fences | Nick Momrik

  2. TaylorCannon

    By far the best one yet.

    When’s ethics A-Z popping again?

    May 22, 2013 at 1:49 am

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