The price of excellence is discipline. The cost of mediocrity is disappointment.

Ayn Rand asked if you know the hallmark of a second rater? She said it is resentment of another man’s achievement. Those touchy mediocrities who sit trembling lest someone’s work prove greater than their own. They have no inkling of the loneliness that comes when you reach the top. The loneliness for an equal, for a mind to respect and an achievement to admire.

“They bare their teeth at you from out of their rat holes, thinking that you take pleasure in letting your brilliance dim them, while you would give a year of my life to see a flicker of talent anywhere among them. They envy achievement, and their dream of greatness is a world where all men have become their acknowledged inferiors,”

“They do not know that that dream is the infallible proof of mediocrity, because that sort of world is what the man of achievement would not be able to bear. They have no way of knowing what he feels when surrounded by inferiors, hatred?”

“No, not hatred, but boredom. The terrible, hopeless, draining, paralyzing boredom. Of what account are praise and adulation from men whom you do not respect? Have you ever felt the longing for someone you could admire? For something, not to look down at, but up to? I have felt it all my life.” she said.

People do not want to think and/or learn. The deeper they get into trouble, the less they want to think. But by some sort of instinct, they feel that they ought to and it makes them feel guilty. So they will bless and follow anyone who gives them a justification for not thinking.

Anyone who makes a virtue, a highly intellectual virtue, out of what they know to be their sin, their weakness and their guilt, they envy achievement and their dream of greatness is a world where all men have become their acknowledged inferiors.

They do not know that that dream is the infallible proof of mediocrity, because that sort of world is what the man of achievement would not be able to bear.

We have learnt to accept and live with failures, disappointments, incompentences and inferiorities, but we expect different results or positive outcomes. You cannot do inferior work and expect by miracle, superior work.

Mediocre work will result in mediocre results. As the saying goes, you reap what you sow. Mediocrity has become a disease. Nobody thinks or feels or cares any more; nobody gets excited or believes in anything except their own comfortable mediocrity. Mediocrity has become a norm and is acceptable in our daily lives.

Mediocrity is not abstract, it never was. It is the one thing that is more dreadful than inactivity, more imperative than the destination you have in mind, scarier than taking the flagrant ride toward an easy way out, and at least as imposing and overpowering as the passion you set out to fulfill.

Get rid of mediocrity by preparing yourself to stand the worst kinds of failures, have your own voice, whip your confidence back into form and learn enough to be able to relate to different fields of knowledge.

Mediocrity is contagious, never surround yourself with people who can give it to you and do not give up on who you need to be for who you are being made into.

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Until next week Tuesday, bye-bye for now.

Yours Truly
Tshepo Ishmael Phetoane