By Lauren Fenthum

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Everywhere you go, you hear the same thing; “you need to specialize to be taken seriously.” Specialization is not bad, but it can be scary. It could land up in disappointment and failure, or it could lead to missed opportunities in the future. But what does it really mean to be great at something? Simply put, being great is relative, and relative is what you’ve been exposed to.

Specializing can be seen in many different aspects of life. For instance, an athlete builds their life around a specific goal, and it takes specializing and focusing on one core aspect to take you from great to best. The same rules apply in corporate life. You need to ask yourself, “How can things be interesting, if you are not constantly trying to be the best?” especially in the modern world today when everything is so convenient and at the tips of our fingers, it feels like you don’t have to work hard anymore, or the fact that there are so many people doing the same thing as you, you just become apart of the crowd and accept being “just ok” at something. Why when it becomes so important to differentiate yourself, with all the opportunity in the world to do so, people shy away from it because of the commitment issues, no focus, determination or grit?

Few people really understand the difference between being on top and being at the very top. Most people know they don't want to work hard enough to be the very best, yet they are still learning and growing. But that level of constant engagement is intense, and not many people are willing to live that type of lifestyle when it could be easier. In reality, people are always going to want 20% more than what they currently have, and this can be in different aspects, like money, skills or recognition. We tend to get into a cycle of becoming comfortable with where we are in present time, wanting more and then either going out and getting it or continuing to cruise. It's human nature. 

In order to become more relevant, be it in any aspect of your day-to-day life, you need to approach life differently, and embrace singular focus. People who are trying to do something big are on the fringe, they are doing what no-one else is doing and taking risks that everyone is either too scared of or that they cant relate to. For the most part, the people that are trying to be something big are not talking about how great they want to be and what their plans are. These people are continuously working at what they want and don't have the time to talk about what it is that they are doing because they are overly invested in what it is their doing. Take the time to invest in something that inspires you and will help you in achieving greatness. It is not easy work and requires a good head space, determination and perseverance, but this will take you to where you want to be and make you relevant in whatever field you set yourself out for.



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