Why Nobody Can Ever Call You Stupid | The BridgeMaker

Why Nobody Can Ever Call You Stupid

By on Jul 11, 2012


Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid. – Albert Einstein

As a kid I was pretty much labelled as the stupid one, or at least I felt like it.

I’m from Singapore, and we have a strict education system. And I was probably the worst student ever.

I always had trouble focusing to learn and absorb. So yup, I usually got bad grades and was constantly in fear of being scolded by the teacher.

My biggest milestone of stupidity was when I was 12, where I got an extremely low score in a major examination.

I tried so hard to make up for it.

Shedding the label of stupid

Have you ever been in that stage where you know you’re really bad at something, so you try to compensate for it with something else?

I knew I was doing badly in school, so I tried to make up for it in other areas in life. I remember actively trying to be a good son, to not let my parents down. I was always very polite to my relatives in hopes of showing my parents taught me well.

But alas, the aforementioned major examination caused my world to crash down and made feel totally worthless anyway.

I literally had the lowest score ever in my family.

I knew I let everyone down and I felt inferior.

Here’s why nobody can ever call you stupid: “Stupid” is just a subjective label people like to give others.

And it’s up to you to wear that label or shed it.

My name is Alden, and I’m 26 years old. I studied my way up to college and I quit my job last year to follow my dream of being a writer. I’m also a breakdancer of 10 years now and even though I’m not winning competitions, the love for it is enough to keep going at it.

I shed the label of stupid with a life of hard work and passion.

This is a post for people out there who feel stupid and inferior in any way:
  1. Others’ expectations out of you are not yours.
    Schools, institutions or your parents’ expectations out of you are not your own. They are merely their own views of what they want out of you.

    It’s more important to know what you truly want for yourself deep down.

    It’s important to also have a realistic view on life, hence the only expectations you should ever need are your own.

    If you know that you gave it your best and always remembered that you tried, no grade or score can ever judge you for your degree of competence.

  2. You’re very special in your own unique way.
    And with that, comes your aspirations, dreams, passion and ultimately your own hope in life.
    Do you know how special that is?

    While it’s definitely important to get an education and do well in school, remember that you have innate abilities within you that are given to you.

    Unfortunately, not all of us have circumstances catered to our abilities.

    For example, the rowdy kid in class who cannot sit still would be labelled a bad student, when actually he requires another method of learning.

    So, if it’s just mere circumstances, why let it bring you down? Why let it weigh you down? CREATE your own circumstances and pave your own path to realizing your true self.

    I love writing, which is why I started my blog. I learnt everything about blogging and online marketing on my own, something which they never thought in school. And it’s this experience of doing it all alone that gave me the bigger lessons in life compared to what school taught me.

  3. You can easily pick yourself up anyway.
    When people do badly in school or lose a major client at work, they think it’s the end and start to think less of themselves.

    That is not true at all.

    You can always easily pick yourself up after that.

    As long as you believe in yourself and keep pushing on, you can go a long way in life.

    The only trick to it is to not give up.

    When I did badly for the major examination, I just told myself to work hard again. And sure enough, I just studied harder and worked my way up to college.

    Stupid is not the end and neither should it be a permanent label. For whatever people think you are, you can easily change that.

    Just go for what you want, work hard and you can be whatever you want.

  4. There’s more to life than just being intelligent.
    So even if you think you’re stupid, you hence want to be intelligent right?

    But don’t forget, there are so many amazing things you can be called other than smart, or intelligent, like:
    Polite
    Passionate
    Classy
    Filial
    Charismatic
    to name a few

    I’ve seen many people who have made it in the academic world, getting their PHDs and qualifying for lofty bank jobs, but their character leaves a lot to be desired.

    That’s to say, some are so intelligent that they forget how to be respectful towards others; some are so good with books, they don’t know a thing about being sociable.

    There are many people out there who buy into living by societal standards. Being intelligent is just one mere aspect of life.

    Why not be many things instead, which you know can BOTH help you and those around you?

    You aren’t stupid. You are many things just by being you

    Just be you.

    Strive to be whatever you want, even if it’s just being intelligent.

    Just remember to not take others’ judgement so hard and strive to be yourself.

    You will definitely go a long way.

Alden Tan is an uncommon blend of blogger, bouncer and a breakdancer, and he pulls it off with style by not caring what others think about him, period. If you want to add this ability to your strengths, click here to immediately subscribe to his free email course.

  • Nicole Ican

    Very beautiful post! Shared!

  • Great post here.  I really enjoyed the list of other things one can be other than IQ intelligent.  Good ol’ emotional intelligence which to me is understanding what it means to be human, is at the top of my list.

  • Kat

    Oh yeah, those with book smarts are some of the worst people!  They are lucky they found a niche which absorbed them, otherwise they would perish, for they do not even contribute in a positive way to others, having no real value.

    As for the school system, I wonder why it even exists the way it does.  I actually loved school and had a great time, don’t get me wrong, but the system does not fit with the way humans normally function.  It started with the goal of giving youngsters the rules of reading and writing and has turned into something completely different.

    I love breakdancers!  They are some of the coolest people around.  Great waking up to your comment this morning!

    • “a niche which absorbed them” LOVE that!

      I love your views Kat. It’s sad how school is now. I read a certain quote that day. It went something like,”Education is about creating minds, not careers”.

      Thanks so much Kat! Haha always a Bboy! They don’t teach that you in school for sure. 

  • Blogger, bouncer, and breakdancer.  You gotta love this guy!  Alden, you are terrific.

    • Thanks so much Galen! You’re terrific for commenting! Love it.