We hear a lot of stories about success, most of them condensed so they fit into a convenient, episodic, narrative we can easily consume. Most have distinct beginnings and endings. All of them have hindsight bias.
In reality, we can’t possibly understand the totality of these experiences. There are emotions and details that are omitted for one reason or another. Rather than beginnings and endings, all of these people decide to try something and then make choices in the middle of the resulting situations.
There are many times at which the answers are not clear no matter whose story is considered. There are times when what seems obvious in hindsight started as a hunch, perhaps being followed stubbornly against the wisdom of others.
If you erase luck and privilege, and decide not to glaze over details, you’ll uncover a lot of average people simply trying something they’re interested in, navigating uncertain circumstances, and largely being surprised at the result.
If you’re reading this you have at least some luck and some privilege. Maybe it’s time to just try it.
I’ve been watching a show on Hulu called The Food That Built Us , and this essay encapsulates the entire show.