Jimmy Johnson, the renowned American football coach and broadcaster asked the question and provided the reply too: "What is the difference between "Ordinary" and "Extraordinary"? It is that little "EXTRA".

The example of Jamaican sprinter, Usain Bolt who won 100m, 200m and 4x100m relay races in London 2012 Olympics is a case in point. Very proudly, Usain repeated his Beijing 2008 Olympic feat with improvements in running time in 100m and 4x100m relay events. He recorded his extra ordinary performance by putting the little extra which was the basic differentiating factor between him and other runners there.

Yes, in every field of life we find such achievers. May be you are one such performer in your own field in your own way. Not to emphasize much, these historical feats are the outcome of the inner urge matched with sustained action, which is expressed in the following lines written by famous Urdu poet and thinker Allama Muhammad Iqbal: 

खुदी को कर बुलंद इतना कि हर तकदीर से पहले 
खुदा बंदे से ये पूछे  बता  तेरी रजा क्या है.

Take the case of a few persons who by virtue of their extra ordinary deeds made us all proud:

Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose: He was an indomitable fighter who also founded Indian National Army while in exile to overthrow the British Rule and put up fights accordingly.

Dr. Rajendra Prasad: He was the first President of India. He was very simple and brilliant, for whom the examiner wrote in his college answer paper that 'examinee is better than examiner'.

Lal Bahadur Shastri: The second Prime Minister of India, after Nehru, who gave the famous slogan 'Jai Jawan, Jai Kisan'. India won the war against Pakistan in 1965 under his able leadership.

Baba Amte: The great social worker and activist who worked tirelessly for empowerment and rehabilitation of poor masses suffering from leprosy.

They all and many others never allowed the constraints to come their way and utilized every moment instead, as an opportunity to do the very best by covering that extra mile which proved to be their X-factor for excellence.

The burning example in recent past was Steve Jobs, the founder of APPLE who despite being suffering from cancer, continued his 'Imovative' works tirelessly (he coined this word 'Imovation' which is: Imitation + Innovation).

Even physical disabilities couldn't stop Stephen William Hawking - the British Theoretical Physicist; Ludwig Van Beethoven - one of the greatest composers in the history or Helen Adams Keller - the famous American author and political activist, from becoming the legends in their own field.

The following two lines of Dushyant Kumar are thought provoking and inspiring on this subject:

कैसे आकाश में सुराख़ नहीं हो सकता
एक पत्थर तो तबीयत से उछालो यारो.

To say, every one of us has the potential to do something extra ordinary at least in one's own area of interest by following the right path in life.


milan sinhaMilan K. Sinha is a freelance writer. He has worked in Banking and Insurance sector for three decades following three years of active writing in various newspapers and magazines. Presently he is engaged in stress management, wellness and awareness activities besides freelance writing. He is based in Patna and can be contacted at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.