By Brandon Cook
“The reasonable man adapts himself to the world: the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man.” –George Bernard Shaw
A contrarian, according to Wikipedia, is a person with a preference for taking a position opposed to that of the majority.
In simple terms, they do the opposite of what everybody else is doing.
Most commonly, the label is used in the investing world. You have, more likely than not, heard of a ‘contrarian investor.’
Warren Buffet said, “What the wise man does at the beginning, the fool does in the end.”
The best time to buy stocks is when the market has crashed, the price is low and the stock is undervalued. The best time to sell is when the stock price is at its highest peak, everything is going great and the stock is becoming overvalued.
This is a common contrarian investing strategy, yet why is it that the majority of investors buy in and jump on the band wagon when everybody else is buying the latest and the greatest, hopes are high and so is the rising price?
Then bad news hits and things begin to take a turn for the worse. The majority of investors ride the market down hoping that it will turn around. Surprise, it doesn’t… and then even more bad news hits. Everyone panics and suddenly decides to get out after the market has already tanked and now fear losing it all.
Read the quote by Warren Buffet again for the answer!
Most People are Fools
Most people are fools!!! And that’s okay because we all start out that way by being born into ignorance. Whether we stay fools or not depends on our life situation and experiences, the intelligence of our parents, our teachers and the instruction we receive as we grow into adult men and women.
Alas, not all of us are born into the best of circumstances. Yet, whether we stay in those circumstances and let them hold us down or choose to break free and rise above them is up to us.
Ultimately, at some point in time, it becomes OUR RESPONSIBILITY to embrace learning, to seek out new knowledge and to apply it… so that it transcends into wisdom. All the while we should question what we’re learning, question what we’ve been taught and as Bruce Lee so insightfully implored us, take what is useful and disregard that which is not.
God only knows that I’ve played the part of the fool for more years than I care to admit. Yet, I’ve always been curious and inquisitive. My dad said my favorite question growing up was “Why? Why? Why?” I encourage you to ask that question as well in your own life.
Why do I get up in the morning?
Why do I do the things I do?
Why am I on this Earth?
Why do I even want to build muscle?
Why didn’t I ask for that girls phone number?
Why am I acting like everybody else?
We’re Acting Like the Wrong Percentage Group
One thing I’ve learned over the years is that there is only a small percentage group of humanity who truly get it. They are the masters in their respective fields, the leaders and the innovators, the 5% Percenters, if you will.
They are those brave souls that stand out amongst the back drop of our ‘run of the mill’ humanity. They are often ridiculed in the beginning and yet in the end have persisted into triumph and victory… having set the bar higher in the process, while simultaneously paving the way for all of us to follow in their footsteps.
They are the Buddha’s and the Christ’s, they are the Einstein’s and the Edison’s, they are the Jordan’s and the Ali’s, the Socrate’s and the Confucius’, they are the Schwarzenegger’s and Saxon’s… plainly put, they are the greatest of mortals amongst us and their achievements and contributions have granted them immortality amongst the pages of history.
Even so, why do so few of us act like them? Why are so few of us willing to heed their calls of encouragement and follow in their footsteps? Why do we keep acting like everybody else?
It seems to me that so many people blindly follow the majority without question, without thinking it through. Is it because they believe that the majority must be correct?
Well, I’m here to enlighten you…
It’s the majority that usually get’s it ALL wrong!
That reminds me of a saying I like that has always stuck with me…
“The Majority are the judges of the sane.”
What that means to me is that IF the majority of the people in the world believe something, well then, by all means it must be true and IF you don’t believe it too… then you are wrong, you’re crazy… you’re insane. You’re a freak and should be locked up so that we no longer have to bear witness to your lunacy!!!
Think about this for a bit. About five centuries ago the majority believed that the Earth was the center of the universe, to propose anything else was preposterous.
Then in the 16th century a new model of the universe came to light. It suggested that the Earth and planets revolved around a stationary sun, which was actually the center of our solar system. This heliocentric model of the universe was proposed by Copernicus, Galileo and Kepler and was met with great resistance until it was eventually proven to be correct.
And by “great resistance” I mean that Galileo was vehemently suspect of heresy, stood trial by the Catholic Church and sentenced to formal imprisonment, which was thankfully reduced to house arrest for the rest of his life.
Need more examples?
- The Earth is flat… Columbus will surely sail off the end of the Earth
- Evolution is blasphemy… Darwin is making a mockery of the Church
- It’s humanly impossible to run a mile in under 4 minutes… can’t be done I tell you.
- A horseless carriage… hahahaha, Henry Ford didn’t even graduate college.
- Men can’t fly… those Wright brothers have their heads in the clouds.
- We could never walk on the moon… who is JFK to propose such a thing.
- Gain 41 Pounds of Muscle in 6 months… bull freakin’ spit, Vince Del Monte is a fraud
- Do I really need to keep going?
It’s time we realized that acting and thinking like everybody else is not necessarily the smartest paradigm or belief system that we should adopt; unless you simply want to be like everybody else? This is at best- tolerable and at worst- mundane!
If you want to be successful, if you want to achieve your highest potential, if you want to make history or leave some type of legacy… YOU need to seek out the Top Fivers! You need to think, speak, and start acting like the 5% of people that achieve what the majority would consider impossible.
Simply put, most of us want to be successful in life, yet we’re acting like the wrong percentage group! If you think, speak and act like an average Joe… who do you think you’ll become?!?!
This insight applies to any area of your life. Seek out the most successful people and learn from them. Watch them, ask questions of them, and adopt their behaviors and belief systems. By all means BE YOURSELF, yet continue to learn, improve and grow. Never stop learning and evolving your mindset and your skill set!
In Part 2, I’d like to share some tips on how we can apply this to our weight training and bodybuilding goals… We’ll take a look at what the majority of people do when they start bodybuilding and want to get stronger, improve their physiques or their performance…
…AND THEN DO THE OPPOSITE!!!
Until then, let me ask you this question: Do you think the “Majority” is usually right when it comes to training, nutrition, or life in general? Why or why not? Post your answer in the comment section below. I do read this and would like to hear from you.
Be back with Part 2 really soon!
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