Pensive

Long weekends are definitely good times for one to kickstart his or her musings about pretty much anything to be honest. I am certainly no exception. I feel as if penning all my thoughts down helps me to articulate certain thoughts of mine out there with greater clarity. I find myself wondering — with all that talk about my one-year stint abroad coming to an end, is there even the slightest of chance, that I would come back craving for more?

And the answer is…

I’ve always had that insatiable desire to achieve the unthinkable when the whole damn world seems to be against me. It’s that inner voice saying, “Ben, game on man buddy!” I like life to be challenging — after all our lives do expire at the end of the day isn’t it? At the same time, I realise the need to feel vulnerable — it is then when you truly appreciate the adrenaline that rushes through your bones. It makes you more… human I suppose? And of course, we’re all allowed to mistakes too along the way. It is somehow preached as the key to success in this modern age anyway. Look up articles on Apple and Amazon and most of the time, the consist of all the good things that the late Steve Jobs and Jeff Bezos have accomplished. They have built companies — no I stand corrected; empires that have shaped consumerism in the handphones and internet realm respectively. But then again, these two people were the exact same two investors that poured money into the once vaunted product that was projected to shape personal transport forever, the Segway.

You see, why did these two amazing founders make the critical mistake of thinking that the Segway was indeed going to be the next big thing? Maybe there were complacent, thinking that future success would be built upon their current successes. Or maybe they went about investing into industries that they probably had no knowledge or expertise in. Jobs was always about hardware and software, intertwining them delicately with design to craft out some of the most amazing products I have ever seen in my life. Bezos was always about the internet from the onset and the tremendous success Amazon has had so far would stay etched in the memories of many people for a long time to come.

But you see, it has not stopped them from being who they are called today — Innovators, as the general public would currently label them under this holy grail. However, till today, I still maintain my subscription to the mentality that when it comes to successful projects — they are ultimately the ones where 99% is probably down to perspiration and the remaining mere 1% is down to innovation. It is hard work that brings people places and I hate it when all the talk out there is about how VR and AR is the next big innovation wave blah blah blah when such technologies have been around for such a long time in the first place.

All the hype is not where the real work is but rather, shouldn’t it all be in the details?

In my honest opinion, innovation is always and will always be overrated. When was the last time you were actually willing to work so hard just to get that new idea of yours off the ground running? Look at Blackberry — the much valued work mobile phone of the past. It has virtually almost 0% market share till date anymore according to recent reports. Taking a step back, was it really down to a lack of innovation at their wheel? Or was it because they were simply too slow to “perspire” and compete?

To answer the question earlier, I feel as though the answer should be a loud, resounding yes. Yet, there’s still those occasional doubts that continue to peg me down. What exactly do you wish to accomplish in your life? Is it going to be the path that has been structured for you nicely and shoved right in front of your face as “The Comfortable & Good Life”? Or is it going to be the path intertwined with a ton of uncertainty, relentless hard work and hustle?

“What am I going to do without you when you are gone?” Mike asked.

I had no reply. But if there was one — I think it would go along the lines of the below conversion.

“Thank you.” Ben replied.

“For what?” he said.

Ben hesitated for what seemed like eternity but eventually, he murmured under his breath;

“For taking a bet on the guy who was too afraid to take his chances.”