Jerry Maguire’s Mission Statement — My 2nd Riff

Abhishek Paul
2 min readApr 30, 2019

Part 1 of the series can be found here.

From JM: “We are at a point of neutrality. We are all, right now, neutral. Neutral, as in not black or white. Not bad or good. Even. Neutral. Even in my own life, after 35 years, I feel that I have never done that one thing, that noble thing that defines a life. Even writing this Mission Statement is odd for me. I am used to flying below the radar, enjoying my life and friends. But I have not been truly tested. I have not gone to India to explore my life, as my brother has. I have not been in a major car accident, or fathered a child. I have not created a life, nor have I killed anyone. I am neutral. I haven’t started a war and I haven’t stopped a war. I have broken even with my life. I have a nice home, a nice car, a fiancee who makes my heart race. But I have not taken that step, or risk, that makes the air I have breathed for 35 years worthwhile. I once had a yellow couch. I got rid of it because it was neutral. My life is now like that yellow couch.”

My riff: “I assumed the goal in life is to fit in — in school, in college, at work, at home, while walking down the road, while writing what I’m writing now. While I’m clear on how to act in different situations, I’m not so sure about who I am and what difference I can or want to make. I’ve managed to fit in so well that I’m stuck. I am predictable even in my complaints. I’m not saying I feel useless or am despondent, nothing as dramatic as that — just stuck in 2nd gear on a road I don’t want to be on, surrounded by others who seem no different. Security (financial) seems to be my god, but even there I’m not faithful — I can’t be. Someone put it so beautifully that it scared me — he said we go through these cycles where we are happy when we get our salary at the beginning of the month, have a small sense of satisfaction when we pay our EMIs / Investments and then have a sense of dread towards the end of the month when we feel we just don’t have enough. We put ourselves through this month after month — we’ve fit into the corporate world. Maybe it’s time I stick my head out of the window.

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