GRE Issue Essay 100

“No one can possibly achieve success in the world by conforming to conventional practices and conventional ways of thinking.”

Being successful has varied connotations. A person may consider himself to be successful if he is able to provide a comfortable life for himself and his family. On the other hand, people may call someone successful if he has succeeded in inventing some path breaking technology which will perhaps change the face of the world. In both these cases, men and women have been successful only because they conformed to conventional practices and conventional ways of thinking. However, there is a rare possibility that breaking away from the conventional norms may ultimately lead to success.

How have these conventions been established? These conventions are essentially methods and practices that have been tried and tested by generations before us. Therefore, following these practices will lead to success in life as the flaws in these conventions have been removed over a period of time by the people themselves. Most of the conventions have been constituted into laws and one does not have the freedom to deviate from the law. The conventional practice for success in owning a comfortable house is to work hard for earning the money required to buy the house. On the other hand, the unconventional method for succeeding in acquiring a house would be to earn money by unscrupulous means like theft and burglary. Can this form of unconventional method to buy a house be termed as achieving success? There are certain conventions which have not been constituted into laws, but still one has to follow them if they wish to succeed in life.

If you follow the conventional practices related to studying and choosing your career, you are most likely to succeed in life. If you decide to break away from the conventional norms and start a business with total disregard to finishing your basic educational qualifications, then you would be taking a huge risk. There is a small chance that you may succeed in your business, but there is a higher possibility of your not succeeding in your career as you have missed out on the education that is crucial for success in every sphere of life. Thus, straying away from the laid down conventions for success in life may not be able to prepare you adequately for what is to follow. The better option would be to complete your basic education, get trained for business management, learn the tricks for starting a business and then embark on your journey to start a new business. This is the conventional method for starting a new business, which more often than not, leads to success in the long run.

Conventional ways of thinking in the sciences are related to the proven facts of science. If you are keen on carrying out research on a particular topic, you will have to start your research work based on the conventions laid down in science. The time-tested theories of science will have to be used by you as a base for your research work. All the latest technological developments have been carried out by improving upon the already existing technology. There are isolated cases wherein path breaking technology has come into existence because people dared to dream of something that was new and unheard of. Bill Gates is one the richest men in the world today because somewhere along the line, he decided to stray away from the conventions that he had been following and came up with something that ultimately became one of greatest technological leaps mankind has made in modern history.

In view of the above, it can be concluded that you have to stick to conventional ways of thinking if you wish to succeed in life or else you would be taking a chance every time you decide to go against the conventional standards. Hence, the bottom-line is that you should integrate the laid down conventions with your own ideas and innovations so that the risk involved in going against some of the conventions is covered by the set of conventions that you have decided to follow.