The Personal Tipping Point

Driven to a Tipping Point

“The tipping point is that magic moment when an idea, trend, or social behavior crosses a threshold, tips, and spreads like wildfire.”

-Malcolm Gladwell

In his bestselling book, “The Tipping Point”, Malcolm Gladwell discusses tipping points as they relate to trends in society. How does a seemingly silly fashion item suddenly take off? Or why does one show become insanely popular, while a clearly better show is cancelled three weeks later? While tipping points in society are very noticeable because of the scale on which they take place, personal tipping points are just as powerful an occurrence, but are seldom discussed.  Tim Ferriss, a New York Times best-selling author, recently addressed the personal tipping point in his new book, “The 4-Hour Body”, which is what gave me the inspiration for this post.
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Evaluating Gladwell’s Outliers: Is Success Beyond Our Control?

“Cultural legacies are powerful forces. They have deep roots and long lives. They persist, generation after generation, virtually intact, even as the economic and social and demographic conditions that spawned them have vanished, and they play such a role in directing attitudes and behavior that we cannot make sense of our world without them.”
—Malcolm Gladwell

This is a quote taken from Malcolm Gladwell’s book Outliers, in which he gives case study after case study to demonstrate how very successful people arrive at that level. His conclusion is that individual merit alone is not what allows someone to be successful. Rather, a whole host of factors—including random luck, fortunate upbringing, and cultural legacy—all interplay with individual merit and hard work, propelling some people towards success and viciously holding others back. After reading through this book, I have to admit, he’s absolutely right.

The way you were brought up can have a gripping effect on how you perceive the world. And many people cannot break out of that perception. On top of this, the way things work for anything one might wish to participate in can be unfair to those who weren’t given a special advantage early in life. Gladwell explains: Continue Reading…