Millennial liberals, I speak to you. It has been two weeks since our country elected Donald Trump. What is done is done. Setback, defeat, and rejection are a constant in life. Learning how to take a loss is essential for greater victories.
Are you feeling angry, humiliated, and afraid? Frankly, I do too. However, I also feel something else: hope. Hope in myself.
My hope does not lie with a Bernie Sanders-type or a next Martin Luther King Jr. What is the purpose of even having a hero if I am too unprepared, too insecure, too ignorant, too undisciplined, and too dogmatic to carry forth their torch? Should that be the case, history will but repeat itself in less than two decades.
My hope springs from an unshakable belief in myself that I will keep on advancing forward no matter what happens. My hope comes from my commitment to learn, to listen, to grow, to prosper, and, if need be, to avenge. My hope rests with the opportunity I have to inspire the same hope within you.
We have a long hard fight ahead of us and a harder rebuild after that. In the coming days, the best version of you is needed.
Self-righteous revolutionaries, rioters, glorified victims, and self-flagellating doomsayers are not needed. The best version of you is needed.
Don’t fall stupid. Martyrdom is less noble when you could have easily contributed more. Self-sacrifice is selfish and despicable when you trade your untapped potential for a moment of catharsis. The best version of you is needed.
Your art is needed. Your entrepreneurship is needed. Your intellect is needed. Your science is needed. Your athleticism. Your compassion. Your will. Your courage. Your empathy. Your beauty. Your talents of all forms are needed. Most of all, your patience is needed.
If you so desire victory against the corrupt institutions of powers be, then you must be worthy of replacing those who run the show.
Our generation has been destined to weather this storm. We will rise and have our actions echo throughout eternity. Let us endure and then let us spring back so hard we spark a catalyst for human evolution.
Let the corrupt, the hateful, and the willfully ignorant watch as we, the most compassionate youth in history, mature into our social, mental, spiritual, and physical primes –ice gripping their hearts as we elevate ourselves to levels never before seen.
Upon their twilight, let them face not the oversensitive rabble of entitled youth that they have come to enjoy mocking. Rather, let them gaze upon rank after rank after rank of steely-eyed Millennials, each calmly radiating an unlimited plethora of internal strength -each more capable than the last. They will finally know their place before us. Obsolete.
The fight against Donald Trump himself is NOT our generation’s destiny. To allow one man to command our entire attention would be both severely limiting and a gross misallocation of our potential.
Besides, should Donald Trump actually turn out to be a benevolent leader, we must not forget that he could have easily been as bad as we had imagined. The foundation of bigotry, extremism, and intolerance (from both the right AND the left) that elected Trump in the first place will remain, regardless if Trump betrays these foundations. We cannot afford to return to our former negligent habits either way.
Our fight is bigger than any one man. Our fight is to conquer the decadence of human nature that has lead to this mess in the first place. It starts with you.
Before we can conquer others, we must first conquer ourselves -our own insecurities, prejudices, egos, and irrationalities.
The road to self-discovery and reinvention is a long, arduous process that will never end. Battling with inner demons can potentially lead to the discovery of things that will tear your world asunder.
Maybe you are not as capable as you had thought you were. Perhaps you realize that the core beliefs you have held onto for so many years is simply all bullshit. You had put all of your energy into something that gave you nothing. These realizations are painful, disorienting, but necessary for growth.
Personally, in these moments, no piece of wisdom I possessed could provide comfort. I had no choice but to ride the wave with a broken mind and trust that I will reemerge reborn. With a growth-mindset, the reward is worth it every single time.
Train yourself to become comfortable with being uncomfortable. Discomfort is the price for growth. Let us leave our safe spaces to journey into self-improvement places.
Do not take yourself too seriously. Ego is the enemy of growth and knowledge. The less of it you have, the more doors you open for yourself.
Do not compare your journey to another’s. Do not look at another’s strength and say, “I can never be that”. Do not look at another’s weakness and say, “Ha! I can do that better.” Everybody has a unique set of circumstances and their own ship to navigate.
For some, a reasonable challenge is to wake at 4:00 am and run 10 miles. For others, it is a grisly dogfight to climb out of bed at noon without ending it all. Don’t compare yourself to anyone else. Don’t walk around with a judgmental stick up your ass. Stay in your lane.
Stop overthinking. If your train of thought brings no happiness or fails to propel you towards a desired course: stop, drop, and go. Do not dwell sleeplessly upon existential questions. Do not wallow in self-pity. Do not waste time convincing yourself of something that is not there.
Let us become the fastest generation to realize that we do not have all the answers. Even the greatest minds have blind spots. Let us recognize that we as human beings –no matter how talented or bright- can wrought ourselves disaster if we become closed-minded, give into groupthink, and demonize those that disagree with us.
Let us be the generation that accepts that human knowledge is relative and that there are always different points of views to learn from. Thus, we will build a world where we seek out the best ideas from liberals, conservatives, and even those whom don’t give a fuck.
Let us stop assuming the worst in our fellow human beings. The labels of racist, misogynist, homophobic, or bigot should be used as a last resort rather than as the common jab of liberal discourse.
We shall mature to realize that most people whom ally with those that hate us are not out to hurt us. They chose this path because their pain and their desperation overrode their empathy.
We will not say to them, “I know what is best for you, peasant. My concerns are more relevant than yours.” We shall listen, we shall empathize, and we shall compromise. We shall not force them to conform to our needs but rather we will build our world to accommodate theirs.
There are many occurrences in life that we cannot control. Thus, the events that we can control should warrant a greater share of our attention. We can hope for the tides to turn in our favor. We can hope for the storm to quickly abate. We can hope that the seas will always remain calm. Or rather, we can just build a better ship and name that hope.