A nice reflection by David Brooks on how our views on our autonomy change and evolve as we grow older. In our earlier days, this be in the form of the ‘reality distortion field’ of Steve Jobs, or each of our own smaller experiences of having achieved something that looking back, had we known or recognized all the obstacles, would not have attempted. And of course living with cancer accelerates this change in our thinking.
A deeper discussion and reflection than the ‘you didn’t build it’ distraction. Quote:
In short, as maturity develops and the perspectives widen, the smaller the power of the individual appears, and the greater the power of those forces flowing through the individual.
But you, Mr. Confused in Columbus, are right to preserve your pride in your accomplishments. Great companies, charities and nations were built by groups of individuals who each vastly overestimated their own autonomy. As an ambitious executive, it’s important that you believe that you will deserve credit for everything you achieve. As a human being, it’s important for you to know that’s nonsense.