They don’t play fair.
The giants they battle will always whip them if they play fair. Of course, exactly what is fair is determined by the big guys; fair means playing by the rules they’ve established and interpret – the ones they can win by.*
Underdogs can win, though; more often than they know.
They don’t have all the paraphernalia and expertise of the larger players, and this means they have to work harder. No coasting here, so it’s easier and simpler and less time-consuming and more acceptable to settle for playing with the favourites.
As Malcolm Gladwell points out, you have to be desperate to put in the great effort needed to turn being an underdog into an art.
I’ve worked with hundreds of people around their dreams and talents, and I’ve seen just how hard it is to put in the reflection and practice and creativity needed to hone their art and make an impact.** When they make it, against the odds, it is one of the sweetest things in the universe to see.
It never gets easier.
I don’t want you to be under any illusion. This is such an open-ended game, meaning, once we get into the way of hard graft and failures and trying again, and we see what can be produced, we don’t know how far we can take it, where the ceiling is.
You’re not there yet, for sure., so I want to encourage you to keep going, because you can.
It is very likely, underdogs understand the universe and know there is more to gain than lose if they make a move.
(*I’m thinking of Richard Branson’s experience when he took on British Airways, or fair-trade versus free-trade. I’m not questioning the rules apparently transgressed by Tesco’s recent “accounting error”.)
(**This is art in its widest sense: the amazing thing every Human life can create and contribute.)