Be Like Goku

If you know me, you know I’m a huge fan of Dragonball. Be it the original, Dragonball Z, Dragonball GT (yes, I said it!), or DragonBall Super. I have been thinking a lot about my life and how I got where I am today. The thing that always comes back is the Goku effect.

What is the Goku effect? Quite simply — always work as hard as you can to be the best. If there is someone better, work hard to surpass them. If there is something you can’t solve, find other people and get their help. Practice until you can solve it in your sleep. Never settle for being average. Never settle for being “all right”. Never settle for not achieving your goals.

Whenever Goku faces a new opponent, it’s never an easy match up. He is always tested to his absolute limits and always surpasses them. Life will never be easy. There will always be a challenge. There will always be someone better. Your goal is to overcome that challenge. Your goal is to become the best.

Some people might call this jealousy. I don’t think it is. Life is not a zero sum game. If you succeed, that doesn’t mean others will fail. If others succeed, that doesn’t mean you can’t. Being like Goku doesn’t mean another person will somehow be worse off by your success. It’s just another way of reassuring and motivating yourself that, if someone else can be at a certain level, if someone else is that good, why can’t you?

This is different for different people. However, I feel that when I’m around incredible people, I work incredibly hard because I know I could do better. If I’m around people not really trying hard to do amazing things, and I feel like I’m the most accomplished person in a place, I feel comfortable. I feel like I can just relax. I feel like I don’t have to work hard. I feel like I’m already at the highest level I can be. That’s scary.

Ultimately, my life goal is to be the best and to make something that will positively impact millions of people. Until then, I will continue to be like Goku and work as hard as I can.

If you’re the smartest person in a room, you’re in the wrong room.