Greatness is merely other people's perception of the courage you unleash consistently, and the continuous work you put into it. Everyone will remember Shirley-Ann Fraser-Pryce for being great - an athlete that's past her "peak" but continues to inspire, after finishing second in the 100m at this year's Olympics; completing her set of 100m Olympic medals while becoming a four-time medalist in the event.
In a utopian world, we’d all have this spirit…but this is reality, and most of us are just trying to get through the day. Imagine: without these crazy people – the people that dare to keep trying when the outcome seems impossible – we would not progress as a society. Imagination and invention would cease to exist, and we would remain still, believing that our rivers, the seas, and the sky meet somewhere.
We need the greatness of others; all of the trails blazed, so we can find greatness within ourselves. We need the first man to walk on the moon (even if he lies about it) so we can believe that it’s possible. Because that’s where it is - in the belief that it’s all possible. We never believed that a man could bolt through 100m within 10 seconds, but once he did, everyone followed suit. We never believed that one man could change the face of a discipline by simply reimagining the faces in his creations but, once he did, an entirely new art form was born.
Now more than ever, we need to believe that it’s all possible; that we can survive anything the world throws at us. These times have called on us to be as innovative as possible and to adapt as a society, and we responded. We came together, stuck it out, and continued to grind; our working hours became flexible like never before, in order to keep the lights on. We produced work that pushed boundaries when we were ironically stuck in the boundaries of our homes. Our resilience is the key, and we must keep pushing until the walls fall down.
These times have revealed that maybe we all have the capacity to be exceptional after all. They’ve shown us that we are more than what we think lives inside us – that we can make the world smaller and connect, even though we cannot do it physically. They’ve forced us to sit down and contemplate the gravity of all things – our lives, our relationships, our health, our careers – making us work harder at all of these. And as we get closer to the finish line, we must consider how far we’ve come and ensure we do not go back to where we started.
The truth about greatness is that it seems very unattainable when looking from the outside but, really, it is something that lies within all of us. Greatness is having the courage to look within yourself and recognising your individual power, and then using that power to affect change.
We must remember to be great, always, because we know we have it within us. We must remember to unleash our greatness because there are those who depend on us to exhibit it.
Our resilience will foster our growth as a people and encourage us to keep getting better.
Let’s just be great.