Friday, January 29, 2010

Mediocricy will never do.

A little while ago, I found an internet page of quotes by the late Latter-day Saint Prophet, Gordon B. Hinckley. After reading it, I decided that I would not just bookmark this page, but I would set it as a tab on my internet page, so that I would see it more often. Anyways, I was looking at my facebook page and looked at some of the quotes I had written on my "quotes wall" and I found this one that I had gotten off of this website. It reads,

"Mediocricy will never do. You are capable of something better."

Now, I'm sure every person reading my blog knows what the word mediocre means, but I'd just like to quickly examine it's definition. According to the Oxford American Dictionary, the definition of mediocre is "of only moderate quality; not very good."

Anyways, back to the quote. In this simple statement something very profound is offered. Each person, of course, has their agency and we can choose whatever we want. We can choose to mediocre if we so desire, but that's EXACTLY what it is! A choice! When we feel mediocre that's because we have not yet made the choice to be extraordinary. *Note: I said extraordinary, not perfect or flawless (I'll come back to this later)* I know that I sometimes feel like I'm not good at any one thing. Days when I let this get me especially down, I feel absolutely mediocre. But those are also the days where I decide to dwell on those things that I'm not particularly good at or when I compare my talents to those whose talents are greater than mine. Along with thinking ourselves mediocre is acting that way. Like I said, mediocricy is a choice. If we choose to do nothing or very little, we are allowing ourselves to attain nothing more than mediocricy. I want to emphasize here that being more than mediocre takes work. Of course there are people that are naturally good at things, but among those that are more seasoned and experienced, they won't be much more than mediocre because natural talent can only take you so far. I'll use myself as an example of this. I have a natural talent for singing. I certainly wouldn't say I'm the best singer, but I also know that I have definitely been blessed with a good voice. If I chose not to practice and make my voice better, it might sound good to some people, but other singers would know better.
Also, in President Hinckley's statement, he says that we are capable of doing better. This only reinforces the idea that becoming extraordinary is a choice we have to make. We all have the potential within us to be the person we were sent here to be.

Now I want to make an important distinction here. Being extraordinary does not mean that we need to be the best at something. One can be average and extraordinary at the same time. This probably sounds a little confusing, so allow me to elaborate. You can be an average person in many ways, whether it's having an average 9-5 job, an average haircut, an average salary, average clothes. You may just be an average runner, an average singer, an average whatever, no matter what you're average at, you have the opportunity to be extraordinary as well. It could be the influence you've had on others, maybe while serving a mission, sharing a thought about something you find important, or sharing your talents. Whatever it is, you have to recognize that you can be better than mediocre, you just have to try.

I'd just like to re-state that quote one more time.

"Mediocricy will never do. You are capable of something better."

I don't think I can state it simpler than that. It just will never do and each person is capable of being better than that.

1 comment:

Robert Fudge said...

Isn't it ironic that "mediocricy" isn't even a word? It's mediocrity. Seems pretty mediocre to me ...