Leave Them Behind Or Die With Them?
Imagine you’re climbing up a mountain and it’s a difficult feat, as you climb it gets steeper and steeper. Eventually it’s near vertical. Luckily for you, you have a couple of pick axes in your pack you can use to continue scaling the mountain.
But you notice that the other people also trying to climb the mountain don’t have the gear to get it done. What do you do?
Do you throw away your gear and go along with what everyone else is doing? No, you continue climbing. It’s unfortunate that others are less prepared, but before you can be selfless and give, you need to be selfish and know. This is the logic flight operators use when telling people to put on their own oxygen masks first before helping their child. Your own person must be secure first before you’re able to help others, less you become a liability.
Take that same logic and apply it to goal centric analogies of climbing the ladder, on the path to success or climbing the pyramid. If along the way you happen to have an advantage that other people don’t, what is the logic behind not using it? So that no one’s situation improves and we all stay miserable?
A large part of it is because of a fear of judgment from others, of having an unfair advantage they don’t.
But that’s just the way life goes. We were not born exact carbon copies of one another. Some of us are tall, short, more intelligent, less intelligent, talented/not talented in a variety of skills.
Take What You Can Get
We don’t fault NBA players for utilizing their height to play basketball at a high level, why should it be different for any other advantage?
Often times life will do you no favors, you want to be an Olympic sprinter but you are wheelchair bound? Tough luck. But maybe you got brains, why not utilize it to your advantage and make something of yourself from it.
And who knows, maybe once you climb out of the bucket, you can reach down and help pull other people out. But you need to be willing to milk your privileges (use your advantages) first before your able to help others.
As for those crabs that want to break your legs so you can’t climb, it’s a byproduct of the way we were socialized. Think of it this way, everything we enjoy today, as in all the modern luxuries (cable, running water, internet) we take for granted came into being by a group of people setting aside their differences and working together to build something.
Even in individualistic countries, those societies were also built by people coming together. So if someone does something that is way out of line, the group pulls them back in. In other words, crabs in a bucket is a byproduct of our social construct.
But don’t think of it as you’re trying to destroy/undermine the collective and what it has built, think of it as you are creating something new by utilizing your privileges and others will fall in line.
For any great leap, someone needs to be first.
Kingston S. Lim
June 17, 2020
About Kingston’s Journey Series: Kingston’s Journey is a lifelong series. This is the travel journal I take with me. Whether you have questions such as how to change my life or how to travel the world, I think you’ll find value in the life lessons I’ve experienced and documented in this travel notebook. They may serve as travel inspiration for you. In Chinese, there is a saying, “讀萬卷書,不如行千里路.”
This means, instead of reading ten thousand books, why don’t you walk a thousand miles. This is my inspiration to travel every nation (or as many as possible) in my pursuit of my global MBA by learning as much as possible and recording these life lessons learned only by travel. In the end, I think the achievement of dreams, personal growth & aspirations out there through travel and adventure will lead to a more fulfilling life. Living and experiencing the “now” is how I’ll make my life a great memory in the future.