Being the best is a very scary proposition. I talk about being the best a lot because it’s always been my quest—no matter what discipline I’m entering. But it’s more than that. I think being the best is our natural disposition. Let me explain.

I’ve never met a person who said, “I’d like to be mediocre or average.” I’ve never met anybody who’s entered the world like that—people come in wanting to go to the top. But it’s so scary, particularly in our culture, to take on what it takes to be the best because all you hear is that it’s not cool—from the education system, from the news media, from politicians.

Over and over again, what’s being modeled to you is that being the best is conceded. But it’s the most natural thing in the world. Being the best is very humbling. It’s not conceded. It’s hard. It takes a lot of hard work to be the best, but it’s not nearly as hard as being mediocre.

To be the best, you have to go counter to our culture. That’s scary. But guess what? I don’t care. I’m afraid of it too, but we have to face it every single day. What’s coming at you from friends, neighbors and society is, “Just fit in. Just kind of blend in with everybody else and be average. Be mediocre. If you’re too great, we can’t relate to you and that’s not fair.” Or they tell you you’re lucky or gifted. They say all these things that don’t make any sense at all.

Look, this is scary stuff. But why are you here? To have an easy road, to have an easy life? That’s not really why you’re here. You’re here to struggle. You’re here to climb Mount Everest. You’re here to achieve and that’s not going to be easy. It’s always going to be scary. Whenever you feel scared or like people are coming at you about being the best, you know you’re on the right path—100 percent. You are on the right path whenever it gets scary.

You’ve got to face that fear and go forward anyway. The only people we ever talk about anyway are those who are the best, right? Has anyone ever been inspired by someone who’s had things come easily to them? No. We’re inspired by the struggle. We’re inspired by the climb to the top. The only way you can do that is to keep moving forward, despite your fear.