Yesterday Mark Zukerberg came to India for Q&A session at IIT Delhi. His talk was very inspiring. But he didn’t say anything that I haven’t already heard of. It was still inspiring and reassuring. If I see what makes him different from me then I see that there are things that he knew at early age that I learnt recently. Basic things for success like follow your heart. Seriously, I learnt this very recently and truly believe that its the main recipe for success. At my childhood I only knew that we are not born great and to become great we must follow someone great. I was taught to be a follower from the beginning. It never occurred to me that listening to what my heart says can be my unique thing that can lead me to a great path. I always followed some ideal famous personality like Gandhi and Vivekanand etc. When I found their life different from mine which I literally couldn’t follow then I turned towards proverbs, great sayings said by different people. Even that kept me confusing. I remained confused for a very long time searching for someone or something to follow. It never occurred to me to follow my own heart. It was scary. I felt like, follow my own heart? Am I mad? No one advised me that? And I only do things that are advised to me. What would I do if it went wrong? Who would I blame? Myself? It’s scary as shit and I have a safe path to follow great people which will surely lead me to success. No one says following great people is bad. So, why would I choose something scary over safe?
Now I know I was wrong to shut my heart and find and listen to other people. I have shut my heart for so long that now I feel like I am deaf.
Are we not suppose to follow great inspiring people? I’d have been lucky if someone might have said straight No. Here’s the thing that now I think about following great people and success. What must be done to succeed is improve ourselves. How do we improve ourselves? We learn and grow. How do we learn? By books, by findings, by knowing facts, by getting inspired, by practicing. Basically knowledge and experience is the key. And these both somehow include great people. These great people have written books for us to study, they’ve done the findings for us to read on, they’ve laid everything for us. They gave us knowledge. We learn and practice them. So it’s very simple to conclude in brief to follow what they did. But here is the silver lining difference. We do not follow what they did. We learn from what they did and use that learning in our own way suitable. Like when we learn grammar from some book, we know that we have to use that grammar in our life in all ways possible, not just those examples given in that grammar book. When we read stories, we learn from story and use that learning in any similar situation we get in to, not just that one situation portrayed in the story. When we like some pizza, we actually do not like that pizza but its taste. Same pizza at different place can be bad. So we learn the value, the taste and the condition or situation in which to use them. To find that great taste or value, we must be surrounded with great things. Great books give great knowledge. Here is the role of great people who give us great value. So of course great people are important in our life but not to follow them but to learn something good from them and utilize that learning in our own way of living. We don’t live their life.
The surroundings, friends, colleagues matter a lot in respect to our growth. If we are surrounded by good books, good people, we learn good things.
So following no one but our own heart is the way to go while learning good from everything. It’s like our own heart is the vehicle and learning/knowledge is the fuel. Not vice versa. We should not treat our heart, our intuitions as fuel to lead a vehicle of someone else life.