Say what you mean and do not lie. Stand for something. Be trustworthy. It is the antidote to the duplicity pervading our society. Have only one face, not two. Do what’s right in your heart, not what right’s for your pocketbook. Be a paragon of honesty that others can point to and believe in. Dollars are powerful but the world is run by people and if you get your own house in order, stop complaining and start taking action, you’ll be stunned at the results that can be achieved.
TRUTH TO POWER
Leaders look for acknowledgement after the fact. They take a risk, they jump off the cliff based on what’s in their heart. They do not do focus groups, do not believe in research, but abide by their inner tuning fork. Everybody knows the truth, they’re just afraid to speak it out loud. But when someone does, others rally around them.
IGNORE THE NAYSAYERS
If everybody’s your friend you’ve got a problem, that just means you’ve tempered your approach to appeal to all, to not ruffle feathers. It’s the hooks in Velcro that make it work. You need rough edges, it’s your sharp points that will bond others to you. People have agendas, they want to drag you down into the hole they’re in, they want you to be a pawn in their game, and if you’re not wary, paying attention, skeptical, you’ll be dragged down with them.
TAKE A STAND
Fallon is out of time. Colbert stood up and his ratings soared. Today the L.A. “Times” excoriated Trump in a way heretofore unseen:
Playing it safe evaporated with the last century, when the internet came along and disrupted the world. Everything’s up for grabs, we all have the means of communication at our fingertips, we’re all seeking guidance and solidarity and we don’t know where to look in a world where artists have abdicated and the monied are furthering their own agenda. You think you’re losing audience when you pick a side but the truth is you’re bonding people to you, and not everyone can be your fan, no way.
Statistics can be twisted. Fake news abounds. But the truth is out there. You’re a citizen on the planet, it’s your duty to search out the truth, with open eyes, realizing you may find facts that are contrary to your beliefs. Fake news is for the uneducated unwilling to go deeper, you’re better than that. And I hate that expression, it’s utilized to make you feel inferior, appeal to a theoretical moral high ground, so whenever anybody says that to you, call them on their b.s. Too many self-righteous pricks lording their superiority over the rest of us for no good reason.
MAKE MONEY BUT DON’T BE A SLAVE PRAYING TO IT
There’s no harm in making a living, if you’re decrying someone’s lifestyle and assets on principle, the joke is upon you. The underclass is hurting and needs to be helped. But to feel better than others because you are broke is a sad state of affairs in which you ultimately lose. We want to lift all boats. Some abuse the system. Income inequality is the scourge of our system. But when you say you’re better because you’ve got less you just take yourself out of the game and force others into hiding. The best disinfectant for subterfuge is sunlight.
Follow-through is everything in life. Finishing is its own reward. Life is about building blocks, one upon another, to create opportunity. You finish not so you can do the next foreseeable thing so much as being able to see the landscape from higher ground and encountering new possibilities.
RESPECT EXPERIENCE AND WISDOM
And feel free to disregard it after you’ve digested it, but those who’ve been there and done that are the best flashlights into the future, they know what questions to ask, they know where trouble lurks. If you always have to reinvent the wheel you’re never going to get to the destination.
BE AN INDIVIDUAL
It’s harder than it looks. Much more difficult that uploading a video to YouTube or a file to Spotify. Groupthink is ruining our country. Everybody wants to be a member of the club but no one questions whether the club has any worth. Beautiful people are a dime a dozen. As are college graduates. But someone who can parse the truth and articulate a path, rally those in support, is rare.