Your talk at this yearsâ€™ Do Lectures reminded me of how I used to be.
Iâ€™m not claiming that when I was your age, I would have done something as amazing as you have, but twenty years ago, I was a lot more instinctive and I hadnâ€™t yet learned how to talk myself out of doing something. And thatâ€™s what struck a nerve.
RecentlyÂ Iâ€™ve noticed that I find it harder and harder to make decisions. Instead of focusing on the reasons to do something, I look for the reasons not to do it. Take travel as an example. Iâ€™ve thought about taking the family on a trip to South America, but each time I take a step towards making it a reality I find the reasons not to go âˆ’ who would look after the dog/chickens/peacock, what would the kids eat, can we spare the time, what would the school think, what if we all got dengue fever, what if we were kidnapped by bandits?
Maggie, I think that what you have achieved is a lot to do with your character and upbringing, but it is also a lot to do with your age. At 18, thereâ€™s a naÃ¯vety we all possess which makes us believe anything is possible âˆ’ we havenâ€™t yet had the knocks and experiences that make us more realistic about what we can achieve.
As the realism grows, our belief that anything is possible is gradually eroded. There might even become a point where the balance is tipped the other way and we question our abilities and start disbelieving in ourselves. And the gut feelings we used to live our lives by are buried under a mound of reason.
And thatâ€™s when we stop doing.
So I say, we should all try to be the â€˜Maggieâ€™ we once were. A little more naÃ¯ve, a little less worldly and a touch more instinctive. And make sure itâ€™s topped off with a huge belief in the good in people.
And then letâ€™s see what we can do.