• Cat Young


You know that Queen song, “I Want It All”? It’s motivating, it’s inspiring, and most of all, it’s ambition. The song’s message is for society, and it encourages an establishment of equity and a fight for social justice. “I Want It All” reiterates the human drive to get what you dream to have. The lyrics promote peace, while motivating listeners to look into their hearts to find what is desired.

I want it all, I want it all, I want it all.

While some may want it all, I find that having it all isn’t always the most fulfilling. Sometimes I want it all and other times I want just enough. Reflecting on ambition, I wonder if there is a limit to what can and can’t be had? Or even what can and can’t be done? Within this spectrum, at what point does ambition become overwhelming? While I ask all these questions, the main discussion reflects on balancing ambition.

Being ambitious does not amount to doing it all. It is not one's ambition that tells you to work three jobs and volunteer all your spare time. It is not ambitious to spread yourself thinly and widely. Ambition is the drive to achieve a goal through determination and hardwork. I find that ambition becomes overwhelming when it is used to satisfy someone other than yourself. It is also not as enjoyable as a busy bee, when you yourself aren’t even enjoying the work being done. The problem that lies is in the moments when the drive to achieve a goal drifts away from the core intentions. By this I mean that as soon as the determination and hardwork starts to reward someone other than yourself, then ambition becomes overwhelming.

Does your ambition challenge you?

I challenge myself by putting myself in new situations regularly. I find that my ambition lies in my desire to experience as much as I can. I am determined to try all things new and I will work hard on this until I reach the bottom of the prize bucket. I work hard to live my life in this light, because it fulfills me. My ambition challenges me because when everything is new it is hard to see progress. It is harder to recognize growth when there is consistent change in variables of life. My ambition challenges me to find balance.

How do you balance ambition?

I find that I get places faster when I do things ONE at a time. Step by step, one foot in front of the other, steadily moving along the path. Balancing ambition is similar to task management. By this I mean read the situation and choose wisely. If you feel that one task is enough, then focus on that one task and do it well. Have pride in the work you do and respect your boundaries. On the other hand, if you feel you can accomplish two tasks at once, by all means have a crack at it. We all know the saying “two birds, one stone,” because apparently there is a common desire to always try to beat the clock. It may be ambitious to believe time can be manipulated, however in an effort to devote time to yourself that extra 5 minutes can go a long way. Balancing ambition is seeded in the knowledge of personal boundaries. Recognizing what you can handle and how much is essential in developing healthier habits.

I am a firm believer in doing things to the BEST of your ability. Be good at the things you do and have a passion for the life you live. That being said, in the moments that become overwhelming, remember that you, yourself, are in control. Choose your tasks wisely, and give yourself the time to appreciate the experience. The “I Want It All” mentality is great when you are first hitting the ground running, however sustaining this mentality takes a bit of effort. The key is to balance the desire to achieve goals with the emotional awareness of personal boundaries. There is no universal pace for life, so take time climbing the ladder and soon enough you’ll actually have it all.

Be ambitious. Be hungry for more. Be multifaceted. Be curious. Be open to failure. Have the mentality “I want it all, I want it all, I want it all.” because you will find how rewarding life experiences are. Be all these things, but also be aware of yourself, and be gentle with your power. Because in this pursuit driven by ambition you must never forget that life is a marathon, not a sprint. To truly have it all, your ambition must be a way of life rather than a surge of energy. With that in mind, if you really want, you will have it all.

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