“Be better than yesterday, knowing you’ll be worse than tomorrow”

Javier , Spain

Bachelor in Politics, Law and Economics

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Javier Gómez Cabrera

About me

Javier studies politics, law and economics, and hopes to use his degree to foster change in developing countries by harnessing the power of education. In his interview, Javier describes how he plans to reach his ten-year goals, his concept of success and the habits he’ll need to develop in order to get there. Championing skills like curiosity and empathy, he also outlines the traits necessary to be an effective change agent. Javier also gives some universally relevant wisdom, suggesting that we should all “try to be better than yesterday, while knowing that you will be worse than tomorrow.”

Javier Gómez Cabrera, Spain


University Student

What type of person do you want to become? What do you want to achieve, and still be doing in ten years?

I would like to feel self-realized, no matter the decisions I make or the circumstances I experience during those years. I would like to be happy and at ease with myself and the people around me because, as the philosopher Ortega y Gasset said, “I am I and my circumstance, and if I don’t save it, I don’t save myself.”

In ten years, I see myself beginning a new stage in life. I imagine I’ll be beginning the second part of my long-term project: starting a foundation that uses primary and secondary education to spur political, social and economic progress in developing countries. My goal is to use an educational method that empowers all individuals—no matter their social background—and makes them active change agents.

In short, I want to use education as an elevator to create wealth. In ten years, I would like to have the necessary tools— not only the physical and tangible tools, such as money, but also the mental ability—to take on a project of this scale.

To become the person you want to be…

  1. What habits do you need to create?
    The first and most important habit is changing my mentality: believing I can be a changemaker, and that I can influence the world around me. In order to achieve this, I must first be honest with myself. The second habit I must create is consistency: fulfilling objectives within the time frame I set myself. Third is knowing how to channel frustration and stress into something constructive. Finally, there’s being aware of what’s happening around me and understanding it from a critical perspective.
  2. Who do you need to collaborate with?
    I need to collaborate with people from whom I can learn, allowing me to grow as a person. I think that, no matter what their field, curiosity is something these people and I will share. Curiosity is what allows us to ask why, giving us the opportunity to try and find answers and push the world forward. Having a conversation with someone who is curious makes you grow as a person, especially if they have a different point of view.
  3. What skills do you need to learn? 
    Curiosity. One must never stop questioning things, and trying to respond to the questions that arise. It’s also very important to develop the capacity to empathize with other people. One must be conscious of the reality in which they live in order to establish priorities and have the perseverance to reach the goals they establish. Finally, the capacity of self-improvement: to try to be better than yesterday, while knowing that you will be worse than tomorrow.

What does success look like to you? 

Success, to me, is achieving the goals I have set for myself without seeking external recognition. I try to do things for myself, and not necessarily to compete with anyone else.

Imagine you were to receive an award for an outstanding accomplishment. What would this accomplishment be?

If I could receive a prize for something I had done, it would be without a doubt for helping eradicate extreme global poverty through education. I’d want to be recognized for creating opportunities and providing the tools that allow people to be whoever they want.

Would you rather be happy, rich or famous? 

Happy, for sure. Happiness is not just an outlook on life, it means feeling fulfilled as a person. It’s being at ease with yourself and the people around you, regardless of whether you (or they) are rich or famous.


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