Excelling is an excellent feeling. I’m sure you fondly remember the last time you felt like you nailed it. A bolt of adrenaline surges through your thoughts and veins when you exceed at an unparalleled level. In addition to the feeling of being a sexy prodigy. It’s elusive. It’s often too easy to find ourselves in a meaningless pursuit of excellence at the cost of our own humanity.
Aubrey Graham portrayed Jimmy Brooks, a Degrassi Community High School basketball star in Degrassi: The Next Generation. Graham later left Degrassi in pursuit of his more acute, hip-hop fueled fantasies. Years later, with multiple full-length LPs, commercially hyped and platinum selling mixtapes later, Aubrey Drake Graham certainly had some ethos for his smash single, “Started From The Bottom.” He admits that his path from B-list actor to dank memester hasn’t been an easy one, and that years of patience and hard work brought him to where he’s at.
Then I turned 14, I started in the South Dakota odd job circuit. I was paving driveways, tearing down greenhouses, painting houses, and then rebuilding the same greenhouses. With a confident, self-starting and enjoyable manner, I was easy to work with. After only a couple weeks oat work, my team had proven competency, thus thrusting us, reluctantly, into voluntary supervisor roles that required many more hours of work and dedication.
My brother just started a new job. Looking for part-time employment, he found a great local coffee chain in the Minneapolis airport that hired him within a week. We found ourselves encountering the same predicament. With his skillset, in his first shift, he was offered to apply for a supervising role.
I don’t want to believe that it’s normal, but it exists. I call it the “Started From the Bottom” phenomena: the act of working your way to the top without wanting to be there. Circumstances land us in jobs that we’re naturally gifted for, but don’t fulfill us holistically. We’re praised consistently for perfecting menial tasks, and expected to enjoy something just because we’re good at it. The world doesn’t work that way. Our conscious minds play an important role in defining what is important for us – and in the end, it’s all we should trust.
We are so much more than what others see us for. Go, do what fills you up, and do it a lot. Drake was rebuked for transitioning to hip-hop, but I’m sure his haters eat their words each time the lyrics, “Started from the bottom now we’re here” sound its triumphant affirmation.