Last Wednesday, I listened to a guest speaker, who talked passionately about being the best we could ever be in life. She considered our best self as an embodiment of our own definition of excellence.
In the Q&A part of her presentation, I posed a such question, ” you emphasized repeatedly the importance of being a living example of our own definition of excellence in anything we do. But, sometimes, our own definition of excellence is different from the one, respected by the outside world. How do you balance the both?”
Her answer to my question was, “that’s a good question. In order for you to match your definition of excellence to those, accepted and respected by the society and professional industries, you need to take a closer look at individuals that you admire, who have made their mark successfully in your fields of interest by simply being their excellent self. Comparing your excellent self to theirs, you’ll be able to figure out the areas of improvement.” In other words, imitating others’ merit and make it your own.
Interestingly enough, while reading a chapter of Steve Jobs’ biography earlier, I stumbled on a maxim of his, which reiterated the speaker’s advice to me.
Translation from French to English: ” One must know how to refashion someone’s good work to his or her best work.”~Steve Jobs