Day 12 – Ambition 101 with Pippi Longstocking

“I have never tried that before, so I think I should definitely be able to do that.”

Pippi Longstocking

I came across this Pippi quote today. Saw it on a cover of a magazine or something. When I was young, my sister and I would get up early on Saturday mornings and watch TV together. One of the programs was Pippi Longstocking. If you’re not familiar with this girl, I’ll give you a description about how I remember her. Pippi is a bit of a daredevil. Totally not a fashion queen with her non-matching socks and oversized sweaters. She doesn’t care what other people think of her. She is always happy, joyful and adventurous. She is incredibly strong and extremely positive. I was always a bit intimidated by her, because I wanted to be like her.

The older I get, the more I realize that I am not really like her. Yes, I am an optimist and always ready for adventures, but I can’t lift horses and I struggle with ambition. The word has a  sort of negative connotation to me. Being ambitious sounds opposite from being service-oriented and humble. It gives me the idea that you would need to want power, money, influence or you name it. I’ve also never really been competitive and I am terrible at any sort of team sport. So that might explain my lack of interest in ambition.

When I was thinking about the concept of ambition, looking up a definition, I realised that even though I don’t like the word itself, it is a good quality to have. Being ambitious means that you are motivated. That you have a desire to grow and that you are willing to work hard for it. I think it is perfectly possible to be ambitious without being competitive. Competition includes winners and losers. Having ambition means you want to work on making dreams come true, but it doesn’t mean that you are crushing someone else’s dream.

Therefore I would like to see ambition as growth. Growth is one of my favourite concepts. Firstly, because it is so closely connected to nature. Secondly, because it includes seasons. Growth is a circular movement. We are not necessarily going straight from A to B, but it takes you through seasons of cold and warm, ups and downs. Lastly, growth is about the process, just as much as it is about the end result. Watching my own grapes turn ripe, greenish-yellow and juicy is one of the most beautiful things. Ambition can just be like that. Learning about the process you are going through rather than having your only focus on the end product. Because believe me, once you reach your goal, you’re not going to be a happier person. You’ll get used to the newly gained power or the extra money and still hunger for more.

Yet in the end, there is still a difference between the two. Ambition just requires for you to set a goal, motivate yourself and work hard for it. Growth requires you to accept the hard times as well and the focus on the process rather than the end result. In the mean time, let’s just enjoy whatever comes our way. Just like Pippi did. She had loads of fun. Maybe a little too much sometimes, which got her into trouble. However looking at the problem her own way, usually got her the solution to her problem as well.

Yes. I like Pippi. Even though she is just a girl from a bed time story or Saturday morning television, I admire that character. Besides all the thoughts she triggered about a new take on thinking outside the box and being adventures, she is just a girl with crazy hair. And honestly, having a pet monkey and a treasury filled with gold coins sounds kind of awesome, right? #lifegoals

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