We all have this vision of being great or living a great life (one day), but what is stopping most humans in achieving this ‘simple’ task? I often hear people throw the words “good”, “great” and “best” around, without understanding the concept thereof. For some the misconception between good and great is decided by the imaginary ceiling in their lives. When you first start out, you find yourself in the amateur zone as a baby, but as you grow older your senses and skills develop accordingly. Some develop more than others, but this tends to even out at a later stage in your life. After that most people are sort of in the same space when it comes to income, lifestyle and aspiration. In 1891 the 100m record was held by an athlete by the name of Luke Cary, running it at 10.8 seconds. At that stage it was hard to believe that anyone would be able to run a sub 10-sec race. It took a few decades before it was done successfully, and today the record is held by Usain Bolt with a time of 9.58 sec. What seemed impossible initially was achieved eventually. It is truly a great achievement and amazing to see Usain run, but can one say it is greatness? What exactly qualifies as greatness, and do you have the ability to also achieve such ‘greatness’? At most, greatness is a perception… Anyone achieving the extraordinary or unusual might think they are great, but it simply means that they are above average (for now). Greatness is in the eye of the visionary… If you can dream and see your greatness in its final form, that only gives you a picture in your mind. Where the greatness lies is in the process of achieving your objective. What you had to deal with and endure to reach your destination is half of the achievement. How you occupy that space once you have achieved that which only a few have ever done is what makes you great and defines the legacy you will leave for others to apply and quote. Until you have a glimpse of your ultimate best you will not have the capacity to fathom what is required from you to be that exact version of yourself. Mohamed Ali was deemed a legend by many, but what made him such an iconic figure? As a boxer, he wasn’t that imposing and didn’t possess more skill than the next guy, but I’m sure we will all agree that he had something that most people lack: he had vision. He could see himself in any situation, whether it be interviews, in a boxing match or in public. He was famous for the slang he used to belittle most of his opponents. Regarded by many as the “original father of Rap”, he had a way with words and infused it with emotion. Always larger than life in his mind, he could see situations and prepare for them on all levels. It is obvious that all his interviews and media interactions were meticulously planned, prepared for and executed to perfection. He clearly knew that if you win the mental battle, 50% of the battle is won. Every single human being on earth possesses a gene called ‘the Tiger Gene’. It’s said that both sheep and tigers can pounce, but only one of them capitalizes on that ability. Despite general ignorance on the subject, everyone possesses the Tiger Gene, but many unfortunately do not realize it. It is part of the human DNA and kicks in when survival mode situations arise and your heart starts to pump faster and your hands get sweaty. Even when faced with only a serious mental challenge, you nevertheless still show the same signs of physical distress. This should prove to anyone that whatever the mind believes is far more powerful than we realize and has a major physical impact on your body. As human beings, we typically walk around and participate in life as sheep, purely because we seldom have the need to reach into our DNA and pounce like a tiger. The way our lives have become, we have lost so many of our survival skills our ancestors possessed because it’s no longer necessary for our existence to tap into these skills. Our lives have become more simplified and automated; therefore, obesity is at an all-time high, the social middle class is busy disintegrating all around the world, and most countries now have a lack of scientists, mathematicians and medical specialists. The reason for this is that we have almost reached critical mass. This is when our actions have taken us beyond the point of rectifying the situation, as it has now gained so much momentum that it doesn’t require our influence anymore. We have no option than to shut down, reset and start all over again, because the current system is causing more harm than good. On top of that we didn’t see the whole system collapsing because it happened over a very long period. I like to call this ‘The leaning tower of Pizza’ effect. This is when you become so accustomed to something that you can’t see it heading in the wrong direction. This process happens over decades, which is why most people neither realize nor see it. It spans over a few generations and therefore becomes economically and socially acceptable. To compensate for the loss of social classes, the Living Standard Measurement classification is constantly reviewed and adjusted to mask the fact that certain social levels in society are on the endangered species list. But getting back to our Tiger Gene… In our life cycle we go through several different stages of self-actualization and levels of confidence. Stage 1 – We are born with only two fears: the fear of falling and the fear of a great noise. All other fears are self-imposed. Stage 2 – We go to school and we are introduced to a well-structured system wrapped in rules and regulations. Not that having structure is a bad thing, but it has reached a level in our lives where creativity is now frowned upon because it’s not as the ‘rules’ dictate. Ever watched the movie Judge Dredd? We all had a good laugh in the late 80s when Stallone brought it to the silver screen. Yes, maybe it was a bit over the top, but in principal we live in a world that demands no maverick-like behavior. You might not get into trouble for doing so, but you would almost certainly be isolated and made out to be a fool. Stage 3 – We pursue a tertiary education and regain some of the confidence we lost during our high school years. Stage 4 – We go to work in the ‘real’ world and quickly realize that we will never be in control unless we decide to stand up and back ourselves. Stage 4 – We meet the love of our life and get married. Soon kids appear and guess what… Yes, you guessed it… the cycle starts all over again! Unfortunately, humans generally do not value the life and gifts they have been blessed with… If you resonate with the last two paragraphs I suggest you take a serious look at your life and do one thing and one thing only: break the cycle and start to feed your tiger! Let it come to life! Not only do you deserve it, but as far as I’m concerned God gave you all these talents, abilities and the Tiger Gene to be the very best version of what you possibly can be… yet what do you do? Yes, you are correct: you are wasting it! So, get off your lazy or cushy behind, back yourself, feed that tiger and become the unique individual God intended you to be. You owe it to yourself, your loved ones and also to humanity!