Excellence is a powerful word. It is mentality aimed by many and used by many. It is a habit practiced by many through struggle and exhaustion. It is an attitude countless yearn to attain yet wrongly say they have failed to do so. It is a word often misunderstood because excellence is not necessarily getting 100%, rather, it is giving 100% in all that you do. Excellence is a matter of doing everything in congruence to Magis which is a Latin philosophy of always aiming for “more” under the light of knowing everything you do is for the greater glory of God. Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam. The key to fulfilled excellence is finding God in all that you do and simply putting him as the pivot of all your works and doings.
Somewhere in the universal archive of everything, there exists a notion that excellence is being “perfect.” This idea probably derived from how “excellence” is used a unit for measuring the overall outcome of success molded after a series of challenges and tests. Using excellence as such is like hiding the gold under layers of soil– not fully realizing the goodness of its existence. One does not need to meditate on the peaks of China’s mountains for eons of years just to realize the full essence of excellence. It simply comes when one applies it in a way that would actually motivate the soul and not pressure it. When that individual has realized that excellence gives positive stress to achieving an end, success will surely come within his/her trajectory, like leaves flowing with a gush of wind. Success is the by product of excellence coupled with firm determination, commitment and direction– where one stands tall despite failure and moves forward despite the wounds and bruises; where one selectively absorbs the criticism needed for his/her travel still having a strong sense of purpose; where one learns from the environment to further mold his/her integrity into something that can push them to where they should go. All of these merely fall under the umbrella of excellence because excellence should not be considered an end, but a means.
The hands of a clay molder can also be associated to the idea of excellence. The longer they hold the clay into a specific shape, the more the clay fits into it. Such analogy can be compared to excellence– the hands being what we repeatedly do and the clay what we end up to be. Excellence should then be applied on the hands as the clay is molded to end up with a pleasant and useful pot. On the contrary, hands that did not exert effort will end up molding a pot of lesser allure and usefulness. As Aristotle famously quoted, “we are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” It is through doing things with the best of your ability that will enable you to mold a pot that can securely hold your values and character needed in the journey to success.
Above all, the key to excellence is finding God in all things. If everyone starts looking at God to be the goodness in everything– in every atom or nucleus there is, they’d be destined to reach their end. This idea is a sister concept to positivity or optimism. It is not entirely to disregard the negative side but rather, it is to focus on the bright side despite the weight. It is only through this mentality that we can clear our minds to give space for our plans and thoughts. It is only through finding God in all things that we find the right end to our means which is excellence.
Everyone is born to be excellent. It is coded somewhere in our genes and amplified through effort and purpose.