Socrates Clapped and a Prosthetic Leg

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You know…he probably would be applauding. It was Socrates himself who said that, “True knowledge exists in knowing that you know nothing.” Let me tell you a story.

I was having a absolutely horrible day. I mean…really bad. Couldn’t get myself out of a funk, upset, teary eyed, not following through with my goals, feeling like my life was not moving forward and developing at all..the works. So I jumped on a train to go see my best friend in the city. On the way I took out my journal and started writing. The words began to pour out and eventually I started to make myself feel better. I began with all my complaints, moved towards solving them, and then created a plan, my plan, on how I was going to be the best at what I am most passionate about in this world. I stepped off that train, the sea breeze refreshingly hit me in the face, and to the bus I went.

It happened pretty fast – this man had two crutches, you know, the ones that wrap around the arm – and a pretty decent sized bag. I took out my headphones after standing next to him for a minute and asked him if he needed help with his bag. He smiled and said yes. We got on the bus, we sat down, and in the span of a two minutes he had taken his leg off…his entire leg…and had me hold it really quick while he fixed something.

Ever had those moments that aren’t necessarily jaw dropping but pretty damn close? This was one.

So why is Socrates clapping?

He claps (at least I think he would clap) because it was just recently, and I mean in the past couple of years, when I gave up “knowing” stuff. Huh? What I mean is that I think the moment you believe that you in fact know things – that becomes the moment where you set yourself up for disaster. In an ungracefully said way…I have ventured on a journey of cluelessness. Getting lost, relearning, failing, falling apart, falling together, building…the works. In fact, I have spent years – wonderful years mind you – tearing down and rebuilding the same house over and over again. Why? Because if it can be better, then it’s as good as broken.

We’re not literally talking a house here…

How can I convince you that you should travel down a road marked by fear, doubt, worry, insecurity, failure, pain, vulnerability, loneliness, hurt, sadness…I think you get the point. And hey, that sounds like a lot to deal with – and it is – but I thought I would lay out the battle ahead before you actually decide to dunk yourself in it. I mean, isn’t that half the trouble with our goals anyways? Not knowing the enemy that stands at the gate?

But in the face of all the hard stuff, and it burns sometimes, like a shot of scotch…you begin to learn things about yourself that you never knew existed. You learn to call on yourself when the going gets tough. You learn that you have everything inside of you that you need in order to succeed – and that the people you surround yourself with are essentially your supporting cast of all stars who each serve as scaffolding as you build your foundation and life. You give up thinking that you actually know about yourself, others, and things in life – and give yourself the opportunity to learn every single day. How to make things better, how to make yourself better, and how to be a better person in the world for others. Because at the end of the day that is what truly matters right? Being the best team player out there – and for me – I want my team to be millions of people. Why the hell not? Oh and by the way, in the face of all those really tough emotions and feelings I wrote about above, you learn the depth of the flip side – love, passion, honesty, truthfulness, courage, honor, virtue – the list goes on as well.

So I gave the man’s leg back to him and smiled.

“Thank you for teaching me something today,” I said. He only smiled, because he knew better. He offered me one of the greatest things you can offer to anyone in this world – perspective.

– Evan Sanders

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  • Breazy Taylor
    May 29, 2013 at 3:40 pm

    I think one of the best things that we can do for our selves is break out of our comfort zones. How will we ever progress if we don’t step out faith and into the unknown?

    • thebettermanprojects
      May 29, 2013 at 8:08 pm

      I agree with you fully. Sometimes you don’t even know where your comfort zones are – then life starts getting really exciting when you start sailing for “the edge.” Find your limitation and then destroy them. When we step out into the unknown progress redefines itself. Most people believe that progress is the moving forward linearly – I believe though that after that first big step into the unknown progress is more of a “action” based concept

      Rub elbows with me on the FB page 🙂

  • Dynamic Memory Map
    May 29, 2013 at 3:51 pm

    Reblogged this on Perfectly Opaque.

  • Angela
    May 29, 2013 at 5:59 pm

    Hi! Great post. Also, thank you for following me 🙂

    • thebettermanprojects
      May 29, 2013 at 8:05 pm

      Hey! Thank you! What did you like about it so much – I would be very interested to hear

      Rub elbows with me on the FB page 🙂

      • Angela
        May 29, 2013 at 9:33 pm

        I like your conversational writing style, the awareness that you have for what’s around you and also the bit about giving up knowing everything – that’s a great way to enable the smaller things in life to surprise and revive you a little 🙂

  • Day (452) – Socrates Clapped and a Prosthetic Leg | Petite Mademoiselle Rebecca
    May 29, 2013 at 6:07 pm

    […] Day (452) – Socrates Clapped and a Prosthetic Leg. […]

  • RebeccaLauren
    May 29, 2013 at 6:10 pm

    Reblogged this on Petite Mademoiselle Rebecca.

    • thebettermanprojects
      May 29, 2013 at 8:04 pm

      Thank you for the reblog! What did you think of the post?

      • RebeccaLauren
        May 29, 2013 at 8:07 pm

        It was well written, a good read and inspirational, I was happy to have come across that post, so I thought I’d ‘save’ it 🙂

        • thebettermanprojects
          May 29, 2013 at 8:08 pm

          Thank you! I appreciate the compliments and look forward to your comments in the future.

          Rub elbows with me on the FB page 🙂

          • RebeccaLauren
            May 29, 2013 at 8:09 pm

            Thank you for following me, otherwise I wouldn’t have found that post

  • miso808
    May 29, 2013 at 7:31 pm

    Well said.

  • aarondbell
    May 29, 2013 at 7:40 pm

    Your words, “Because if it can be better, then it’s as good as broken,” will be meditated heavily (or lightly?) upon. I’m serious about this.



    • thebettermanprojects
      May 29, 2013 at 8:04 pm

      Hey Aaron,

      It is something that I have come across a lot in my journey so far. I believe that if you can keep improving upon something then you should. This is also known to be a significant characteristic of Japanese culture. Keep trying to look above yourself 🙂

      Rub elbows with me on the FB page 🙂

  • nikimales
    May 29, 2013 at 8:03 pm

    Reblogged this on Riak, riak and commented:
    Show them, today 🙂

  • ymaster
    May 30, 2013 at 4:40 am

    Reblogged this on thesubtlelessons and commented:
    great message! actions always speak louder than words. Do not wait till you have become a bitter old person with regrets and unfulfilled dreams.

  • Shannon
    May 30, 2013 at 6:09 am

    Reblogged this on Live, Love, Laugh, Dance, Pray and commented:
    This seems to explain my life recently and I am loving every moment of the journey and what I am being taught by other people, experiences, and by God.

    • thebettermanprojects
      May 30, 2013 at 2:38 pm

      Glad we are on the same page and also happy that I could teach you something today. It’s funny how we can learn things from people we dont even know. Awesome!

      Rub elbows with me on the FB page

      • Shannon
        May 31, 2013 at 12:28 pm

        Will do! (:

  • enigmavariations
    May 30, 2013 at 3:33 pm

    Thank you for the follow on Quotessence! I came to check out your blog, and I am very drawn to the idea of documenting growth and self-betterment, along with all the difficulties they seem to bring. This entry was a lovely introduction to your style and personality. I look forward to reading more as I follow your blog. 🙂

    • thebettermanprojects
      May 30, 2013 at 9:04 pm

      Hey thank you that is an awesome comment! It has definitely been a ride! I have learned so much over the past couple of years and look forward to how much I am going to learn in the future. I would love to hear what you have to say about my blogs

      Rub elbows with me on the FB page

  • Shamz
    May 31, 2013 at 4:20 am

    Reblogged this on Shamz Unlimited and commented:
    This has definitely given me Perspective.

    • thebettermanprojects
      June 9, 2013 at 2:03 pm

      Thank you for the reblog. It gave me so much perspective as well. It is funny that those who often give you perspective often know and dont have to say anything. Anyways, awesome 🙂

      Rub elbows with me on the FB page

      • Shamz
        June 10, 2013 at 3:02 am

        Yeah it is funny that way. People who have a lot to say, don’t always say stuff that teaches you anything. Yet people who don’t talk too much, have the most profound knowledge to share.

  • keladelaide
    May 31, 2013 at 9:21 pm

    The proffered limb has given me perspective also.

  • Rajiv
    June 1, 2013 at 11:26 pm

    I like this blog. This is really good.

  • etherealplume
    June 17, 2013 at 7:06 pm

    Reblogged this on etherealplume.

  • Booke Mark
    July 6, 2013 at 3:23 am

    I travelled alone for several months to Asia with Japan as my base. I learned Japanese for a couple of years, but I only had a miniscule, perfectly worthless Korean phrasebook when I visited Seoul, but I survived! That was the best thing of all!

    I recommend teavelling alone as a way of getting in touch with oneself, learning to depend on oneself, and regaining faith. It was a very empowering time for me.

    But now I am faced with a whole new situation–opening to love. There is a gamut of feelings I am experiencing–mostly doubt, fear, confusion, vulnerability, etc. because although the man that I am (maybe was?) seeing is wonderful, somehow there is something that has pulled him away and he is not communicating to me. I read books and online articles on dating and relationships and I am now even more confused than ever. Maybe this part is much more appropriate to your other post, but I hope that things do turn around for me and the negative emotions will be overcome by more positive ones, and somehow I will come to understand what seems like something I am not yet ready to uncover.

    Thank you for sharing your inspiring words!