The Secret of the Underdog

It’s amazing how much our ‘feeling mind’ is a teacher. Its messages typically start in my throat, then travel to my eyes.

I’ve trained myself to pause every time emotion starts to well up. When I feel the sensation, I stop and spend time analyzing the trigger.

Movies like Rudy, or Cinderella man, always create that exact same reaction. I was recently watching Queen’s Gambit and, again, felt that familiar emotion.

I somehow become a surrogate participant in the overcoming of the odds. I somehow taste the emotion of a triumphant underdog.

Maybe you don’t see the value in this insight, but for me, it framed a crucial aspect of my personality. My risk aversion.

My feeling brain is constantly reminding me that the risk is worth it. That maybe I need to bet on myself without the fear of loss. That maybe the point is to show up (especially) because I have something to lose.

This doesn’t mean blindly following our passions. It means respecting a calling. Doing something even if you know you may very well fail.

This isn’t a romantic flight of fancy. If you respect time as the only thing we have, the realization of its finitude should be motivation enough to respect a calling once it reveals itself.

Not everybody is on a collision course with a calling. But if you are, then you need to #QuietTheNoise and listen to the deeper parts of your mind, so you don’t miss it when it arrives. This isn’t something you reason, it’s something you feel.

So next time you start to feel, don’t suppress it, listen to it because that’s where the juice is.

“…a vocation is not a career - a person does not choose a vocation, a vocation is a calling. People generally feel like they have no choice in the matter. Their life would be unrecognizable unless they pursued this line of activity.”, author David Brooks.

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