Should We Be Happy With Being Average?

We all dream to make it big in life- this is an aspiration, however most psychological traits are normally distributed- this means, 65% of all people will have an average personality, intelligence, memory, life etc- this is a fact. Is being average bad?

This is a question which is increasingly gaining attention.
There are billions of people in this world but not everybody can have brains like Steve Jobs, play basketball like Michael Jordan or write like Shakespeare- can they?

Majority of us are pretty average at most things and that’s alright. We are not saying that one should not try to be the best but rather, we all should pursue our passions and make an effort to do well- but at the end of the day be comfortable with the choices we make, get comfortable in your own skin.

Acceptance is definitely the first stage towards progress but at the same time we must set the right expectations- if we get comfortable in being average, we must not expect to touch many achievements. We should be content because everything comes at a cost and all choices involve tradeoffs.

While reading Jobs autobiography, beautifully narrated by Walter Isaacson- it gave a different perspective to the man’s sheer success…

Steve Jobs Trade-offs:

His life was nothing short of a roller coaster ride which involved making tough decisions personally and professionally. Steve Jobs was a rebellious as a child and he felt resentful towards his parents who gave him up for adoption.

Such feelings of abandonment manifested themselves by making him a fiercely controlling person. At early stages of his career when he founded Apple with co-founders- Stephen Wozniak and Ronald Wayne, he represented a tech-savvy, wildly energetic hothead.

His zeal to push boundaries and pursue technological breakouts was not easy to muster. It was during 1985 when he was fired from the company he started on account for ‘driving people too hard’.

A power struggle erupted between Jobs and Sculley- which ended up in Apple Board’s siding with Sculley’s proposition to remove Jobs from his command of the Macintosh Group. He returned to the Group only during September 1997. Along the way he developed rivalries, most noted of which was with the power and tech magnate- Bill Gates.

On a personal front- his family peace, harmony and his own health were compromised.

Should we be successful at any cost?

Then it all boils down to the question- is such success worth the trade-offs?

Think of it this way- if all of us start making choices which most successful people we see make- the balance of the world and status quo would change. It will get distorted if all of us start running blind in a race to get exceptional.

We are not against people who are successful or who made it big rather the question is about ‘how comfortable are you with making difficult choices and living with trade-offs?’

Getting Comfortable in Your Skin:

The other perspective is about getting comfortable in your skin- be happy with being average. Sure, who doesn’t want to be exceptional at everything? We all do- but realistically that’s not possible. What is important is to recognize what matters to you the most?

Is it peace, wealth, health, family etc?

To maintain a balance in life is a challenge within itself and most of us fall into the trap of thinking that ‘if I get successful at so and so…my life will change, I will be happy and there will be peace’.

We fail to recognize that running in a rat race will lead us nowhere! In fact everything is so competitive that we lose out on the small moments that matter, we forget to be happy.

Comparison Index

We need to unlearn what we have been taught so far and question and challenge the very foundations of today’s world.

To begin with, the schooling system which operates on a premise of a ‘comparison index’ when it should be focused towards the ‘happiness index’ should be challenged.

We need to quit the game of comparison and learn to be happy with the choices we make even if that means we will remain in the so-called ‘average’ league.

To maintain balance in life is of paramount importance, we need to change our definition of what we think is ‘exceptional’.

Average is the Real Exceptional

A colleague who works 16 hours a day or a neighbor who runs for Ironman Triathlon challenge- while great in their own right, they do not represent the true meaning of exceptional. You don’t know what trade-offs they have to make on day to day basis?

The people who work for 8 hours a day, sleep on time, take care of their parents, have dinner with family, have time to play with their kids and are focused to improve their health are the real exceptional ones- for they have found simplicity and balance in what truly makes life worth living.




Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Should We Be Happy With Being Average?

We all dream to make it big in life- this is an aspiration, however most psychological traits are normally distributed- this means, 65% of all people will have an average personality, intelligence, memory, life etc- this is a fact. Is being average bad?

This is a question which is increasingly gaining attention.
There are billions of people in this world but not everybody can have brains like Steve Jobs, play basketball like Michael Jordan or write like Shakespeare- can they?

Majority of us are pretty average at most things and that’s alright. We are not saying that one should not try to be the best but rather, we all should pursue our passions and make an effort to do well- but at the end of the day be comfortable with the choices we make, get comfortable in your own skin.

Acceptance is definitely the first stage towards progress but at the same time we must set the right expectations- if we get comfortable in being average, we must not expect to touch many achievements. We should be content because everything comes at a cost and all choices involve tradeoffs.

While reading Jobs autobiography, beautifully narrated by Walter Isaacson- it gave a different perspective to the man’s sheer success…

Steve Jobs Trade-offs:

His life was nothing short of a roller coaster ride which involved making tough decisions personally and professionally. Steve Jobs was a rebellious as a child and he felt resentful towards his parents who gave him up for adoption.

Such feelings of abandonment manifested themselves by making him a fiercely controlling person. At early stages of his career when he founded Apple with co-founders- Stephen Wozniak and Ronald Wayne, he represented a tech-savvy, wildly energetic hothead.

His zeal to push boundaries and pursue technological breakouts was not easy to muster. It was during 1985 when he was fired from the company he started on account for ‘driving people too hard’.

A power struggle erupted between Jobs and Sculley- which ended up in Apple Board’s siding with Sculley’s proposition to remove Jobs from his command of the Macintosh Group. He returned to the Group only during September 1997. Along the way he developed rivalries, most noted of which was with the power and tech magnate- Bill Gates.

On a personal front- his family peace, harmony and his own health were compromised.

Should we be successful at any cost?

Then it all boils down to the question- is such success worth the trade-offs?

Think of it this way- if all of us start making choices which most successful people we see make- the balance of the world and status quo would change. It will get distorted if all of us start running blind in a race to get exceptional.

We are not against people who are successful or who made it big rather the question is about ‘how comfortable are you with making difficult choices and living with trade-offs?’

Getting Comfortable in Your Skin:

The other perspective is about getting comfortable in your skin- be happy with being average. Sure, who doesn’t want to be exceptional at everything? We all do- but realistically that’s not possible. What is important is to recognize what matters to you the most?

Is it peace, wealth, health, family etc?

To maintain a balance in life is a challenge within itself and most of us fall into the trap of thinking that ‘if I get successful at so and so…my life will change, I will be happy and there will be peace’.

We fail to recognize that running in a rat race will lead us nowhere! In fact everything is so competitive that we lose out on the small moments that matter, we forget to be happy.

Comparison Index

We need to unlearn what we have been taught so far and question and challenge the very foundations of today’s world.

To begin with, the schooling system which operates on a premise of a ‘comparison index’ when it should be focused towards the ‘happiness index’ should be challenged.

We need to quit the game of comparison and learn to be happy with the choices we make even if that means we will remain in the so-called ‘average’ league.

To maintain balance in life is of paramount importance, we need to change our definition of what we think is ‘exceptional’.

Average is the Real Exceptional

A colleague who works 16 hours a day or a neighbor who runs for Ironman Triathlon challenge- while great in their own right, they do not represent the true meaning of exceptional. You don’t know what trade-offs they have to make on day to day basis?

The people who work for 8 hours a day, sleep on time, take care of their parents, have dinner with family, have time to play with their kids and are focused to improve their health are the real exceptional ones- for they have found simplicity and balance in what truly makes life worth living.




Scroll to top

Send this to friend