I’m reading the book Mindset: The New Psychology of Success. In it I read, “Benjamin Barber, an eminent political theorist once said, ‘I don’t divide the world into the weak and the strong, or the successes and the failures… I divide the world into the learners and the nonlearners.'”
Babies trying to walk are learners. They just want to know more about how to get this walking thing going. They fall, they topple, they balance. They go on. They are not worried about being judged. They are not thinking, “Wow. Everyone else seems to have this walking thing perfected. They must be smarter, better, and stronger than me.” They just keep trying to figure it out until one day, they start running.
We all start out as learners. But then the world starts whispering in our ears and we start believing it. We may think we can’t ask the question because we will look dumb. Shouldn’t we know the answer? But learners have to be curious and only worried about growing.
The book talks about when Christopher Reeve was paralyzed from the neck down in a horse accident, and he was told to just get used to his new reality. But he didn’t listen. He took part in an exercise program that moved his frozen body with machines. Then five years later, he was able to move his fingers, arms and legs. He was still very injured, but he had made progress and research went in a new direction because of his grit. A true super man.
Are we willing to push ourselves beyond what society says is reality in order to learn and grow?
Self-help author Napoleon Hill said, “Strength and growth come only through continuous effort and struggle.”
Are we willing to work as hard as a baby learning to walk? Are we willing to get up every time we fall? That’s the only way we will learn everything we need to grow. And we’ll be running in no time at all.