6The Pursuit of Excellence

Finding meaning requires focus. It's that simple. Just as identity-hoppers fall, each time, to the bottom of any new hierarchy – a position outsiders inherently dislike – so our lack of sustained focus prevents us developing the edge required to find meaning (as well as the meaning required to forge that edge).

Of course, this poses an immediate dilemma. If we have to home in on that one thing, what should it be? We each have a single path towards salvation, goes the theory, so we have to find it. For some – perhaps talented musicians or artists – the pursuit's obvious. Yet for many others – and particularly for outsiders – it's a trickier concern, not least because our sense of isolation may originate from our failure ...

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