Heavy stuff comes along every now and then, and it just completely wrecks everything you had planned. It turns you away from the route you were on, and puts you moving in a new direction—one that can feel strange and unknown, and therefore scary.
Someone steals your laptop and you can't afford to replace it, so now you have to find a new way to pick up and do the things you planned to do.
Someone in your family passes away, and it rocks your world, changes how you view your life, and disrupts everything you thought was on your path.
Someone tells you that you're sick, that you may never get better, and it changes how you live and how you see your future.
It doesn't all have to be bad news, though. Sometimes even good news can be disruptive.
You learn you're going to have a baby, and now it's all so real, and you have to actually grow up so that you can give this kid the life they deserve.
You find out that you got into your first choice college, so now you have to face the fact that you're leaving home, venturing out on your own for the first time, and it feels scary.
You get the news that you've been promoted, and along with the increased salary you now have to take on new responsibilities and new workplace pressures.
That's life for you. It just refuses to stay the same. Life is disruptive by its very nature.
We should be, too.
Every major advance we've ever had—in technology, in philosophy, in our understanding of the universe—came from disruption.
Copernicus pitched the idea that the Sun, not the Earth, was at the center of the solar system, and that wasn't a very popular idea, and got him a lot of death threats.
Howard Schultz thought Italian-style coffee shops would be a good fit for US consumers, and had to fight just to get anyone to stop laughing and launch the Starbucks brand.
Elon Musk decided that the world was ready for a fully electric sports car and was repeatedly berated by automotive experts saying it couldn't be done, no one wanted it, and Tesla would be bankrupt before it even got started.
You can listen to naysayers and walk away from what you're trying to do, or your can become a force of disruption in the world and create something big.
Remember that, too, when disruption hits your life. Maybe it's a sign that there's something new you can explore, and some new growth you can embrace. Wouldn't we be better off if we could embrace disruption, and use it as fuel to make an even better life for ourselves and our families, and maybe even for all of humanity?
This isn't "lay down, don't fight." This is "pick up arms, and to battle!" When the big, heavy thing happens, when it disrupts your life, look for the opportunities that are clinging to it like Remora cling to sharks. Use the disruption to carry you along, to change the scenery of your life, and to give you even more to live for.
Disruption is the key to progress in our lives. It can hurt. It can be a big blow to us. But it brings the momentum and energy we need to become more than who we were.
Go look for disruption in the world around you.
Go embrace the disruption that comes into your life.
Go be a disruptive force in the world.