I came out of the talk with Chetan Bhagat with a lot of thoughts whirling in my head. What struck me was that he said that he wasn’t the best writer and that he had merely changed the game. Often, when someone is seen as successful people automatically assume that they are the best in their field. For Chetan Bhagat however that does not seem to be the case. He showed how he managed to become a successful writer simply by changing the target audience so that his writing appealed to ordinary Indians. That seems to be a good lesson to learn in life. If you can’t become better at doing something the way someone else is doing it then do it another way. I can’t help but draw a parallel with Genghis Khan. Perhaps, he actually was the best military commander of his time, perhaps not, the point remains though that it is undoubtable that much of his success can be attributed to the fact that he did things in a way that was unique for his time mainly by promoting people based on merit and by bringing the lower classes of conquered people into his clan (John Green, Crash Course History). The point here is that many of the world’s most successful people succeeded by doing things in a new way. As was said by the 18th century Samurai Issai Chozanshi, “Man is a moving being. If he does not move to what is good, he will surely move to that what is not”. Those who do not adapt and change stagnate. They become as Dinosaurs as Chetan put it. Once strong and mighty but extinct now.
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