I recently attended the TEDx Youth Columbus event. And no, my videotaped talk is not available online yet, but I promise that as soon as it is, I will post it immediately! Don’t worry 🙂
But anyways, one of the speakers quoted this excerpt below and it inspired me to write an entire post about it:
“Here’s to the crazy ones, the misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the round pegs in the square holes… the ones who see things differently — they’re not fond of rules… You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them, but the only thing you can’t do is ignore them because they change things… they push the human race forward, and while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius, because the ones who are crazy enough to think that they can change the world, are the ones who do.”
And I think this is absolutely right.
I know that I’m only seventeen years old. I’m well aware of the fact that I’m not technically an adult. But recently I’ve learned that even though I am still a minor, and maybe you are too, don’t ever let anyone tell you that you can’t dream like you’re over eighteen.
Is it crazy to think that a seventeen year old girl can make a difference in the world? To me, not necessarily. But to many people, definitely. But just as this quotation states, it’s only the people who are crazy enough to think that they can make a difference who actually get out there and make the difference. I’ve already posted about passivity, so I don’t want to restate what I said. Ultimately, though, it’s up to us to come up with something–maybe even something that seems crazy–and fight for it until the end. You have to stick by what you want in order to make it happen. Even if people call you crazy. Even if you yourself think you’re crazy.
Remember, if you want more out of this world, you have to be the one to raise the bar first. And sometimes, that includes being called crazy. So when you decide that you are going to make a difference in the world and people start attacking you by calling you names, maybe even calling you crazy, you have to look yourself in the mirror, stand up straight, and accept the fact that you are, indeed, crazy (but in a good way, of course!).
I would be lying to tell you that I wasn’t faced with resistance. As “just” a seventeen year old high school senior, I began to run into quite a few roadblocks since I made the commitment to bring these laptops to my family’s home country. As I started to reach out to the local community to raise money, I was surprised at the number of people who didn’t take neither me nor my project seriously because of the fact that I’m only seventeen years old. I have been denied so many opportunities for me to spread the word about the need in Egypt all because I’m just a teenager.
But I didn’t give up. I could have very easily let the discouragement get to my head, I could have very easily waited a few more years until I graduated from college and gained more “experience.” But something deep within me couldn’t let me continue to live, surrounded with books and technology and devoted teachers, while my Egyptian counterparts halfway across the world had no idea what they were missing. Yes, I’m only seventeen years old. But that doesn’t mean I don’t have passions, I don’t have dreams, and I don’t have a heart for people.
To all the people who shut your idea down, who tell you to stop daydreaming and get back to work, who even call you crazy, just remember that one day, they’ll come around. But for now, just laugh it off. Don’t get too worked up. Instead, you have to keep telling yourself that only the people who are crazy enough to think they can make a difference are the ones who actually do. You never know what’s going to happen unless you try.