One of the worst phrases in the world is “the average person”. Who wants to be average? If the world was really made up of average people, it would be a very dull place to live.
Sometimes business pitches present “the average person” as an ideal demographic that their new business is going to capture. The general idea is that a Joe Bloggs who represents the views, habits and desires of everyone is actually walking the earth, providing a stereotype for people to aspire to.
Thankfully, there is no such thing as an average person, or a normal person.
The most talented, thought-provoking, game-changing people are never ‘normal’. They usually overcome great obstacles, take surprising routes to their goals, are often dysfunctional and under no circumstances do what people expect them to do. As Steve Jobs once said, they are “crazy ones”.
One of my favourite songs this year is The Arcade Fire’s Normal Person, which – as well as being a great rock song – takes the idea of an average person and sends it up brilliantly, celebrating the differences that make us all unique and interesting. “Is anything as strange as a normal person?"
Name a role-model. Are they ‘normal’? Name somebody you love. Are they ‘normal’? I very much doubt it. Everybody should strive to be exceptional.
The world is made up of extraordinary people. Don’t waste your time trying to be normal.