Mark Twain

"Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great."

- Mark Twain

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

The Strangest Secret Article by: Earl Nightingale

 

The Strangest Secret Article by: Earl Nightingale


Transcribed from The Strangest Secret audio program by Earl Nightingale


Some years ago, the late Nobel prize-winning Dr. Albert Schweitzer was asked by a reporter, “Doctor, what’s wrong with men today?” The great doctor was silent a moment, and then he said, “Men simply don’t think!”

It’s about this that I want to talk with you. We live today in a golden age. This is an era that humanity has looked forward to, dreamed of, and worked toward for thousands of years. We live in the richest era that ever existed on the face of the earth … a land of abundant opportunity for everyone.

However, if you take 100 individuals who start even at the age of 25, do you have any idea what will happen to those men and women by the time they’re 65? These 100 people believe they’re going to be successful. They are eager toward life, there is a certain sparkle in their eye, an erectness to their carriage, and life seems like a pretty interesting adventure to them.

But by the time they’re 65, only one will be rich, four will be financially independent, five will still be working, and 54 will be broke and depending on others for life’s necessities.

Only five out of 100 make the grade! Why do so many fail? What has happened to the sparkle that was there when they were 25? What has become of the dreams, the hopes, the plans … and why is there such a large disparity between what these people intended to do and what they actually accomplished?

THE DEFINITION OF SUCCESS

First, we have to define success and here is the best definition I’ve ever been able to find: 

“Success is the progressive realization of a worthy ideal.”

A success is the school teacher who is teaching because that’s what he or she wants to do. A success is the entrepreneur who start his own company because that was his dream and that’s what he wanted to do. A success is the salesperson who wants to become the best salesperson in his or her company and sets forth on the pursuit of that goal.

A success is anyone who is realizing a worthy predetermined ideal, because that’s what he or she decided to do … deliberately. But only one out of 20 does that! The rest are “failures.”

Rollo May, the distinguished psychiatrist, wrote a wonderful book called Man’s Search for Himself, and in this book he says: “The opposite of courage in our society is not cowardice … it is conformity.” And there you have the reason for so many failures. Conformity and people acting like everyone else, without knowing why or where they are going.

We learn to read by the time we’re seven. We learn to make a living by the time we’re 30. Often by that time we’re not only making a living, we’re supporting a family. And yet by the time we’re 65, we haven’t learned how to become financially independent in the richest land that has ever been known. Why? We conform! Most of us are acting like the wrong percentage group and the 95 who don’t succeed.

GOALS

Have you ever wondered why so many people work so hard and honestly without ever achieving anything in particular, and why others don’t seem to work hard, yet seem to get everything? They seem to have the “magic touch.” You’ve heard people say, “Everything he touches turns to gold.” Have you ever noticed that a person who becomes successful tends to continue to become more successful? And, on the other hand, have you noticed how someone who’s a failure tends to continue to fail?

The difference is goals. 

People with goals succeed because they know where they’re going. It’s that simple. 

Failures, on the other hand, believe that their lives are shaped by circumstances … by things that happen to them … by exterior forces.
Think of a ship with the complete voyage mapped out and planned. The captain and crew know exactly where the ship is going and how long it will take and it has a definite goal. And 9,999 times out of 10,000, it will get there.

Now let’s take another ship and just like the first and only let’s not put a crew on it, or a captain at the helm. Let’s give it no aiming point, no goal, and no destination. We just start the engines and let it go. I think you’ll agree that if it gets out of the harbor at all, it will either sink or wind up on some deserted beach and a derelict. It can’t go anyplace because it has no destination and no guidance.

It’s the same with a human being. However, the human race is fixed, not to prevent the strong from winning, but to prevent the weak from losing. Society today can be likened to a convoy in time of war. The entire society is slowed down to protect its weakest link, just as the naval convoy has to go at the speed that will permit its slowest vessel to remain in formation.

That’s why it’s so easy to make a living today. It takes no particular brains or talent to make a living and support a family today. We have a plateau of so-called “security.” So, to succeed, all we must do is decide how high above this plateau we want to aim.

Throughout history, the great wise men and teachers, philosophers, and prophets have disagreed with one another on many different things. It is only on this one point that they are in complete and unanimous agreement and the key to success and the key to failure is this:

WE BECOME WHAT WE THINK ABOUT

This is The Strangest Secret! Now, why do I say it’s strange, and why do I call it a secret? Actually, it isn’t a secret at all. It was first promulgated by some of the earliest wise men, and it appears again and again throughout the Bible. But very few people have learned it or understand it. That’s why it’s strange, and why for some equally strange reason it virtually remains a secret.

Marcus Aurelius, the great Roman Emperor, said: “A man’s life is what his thoughts make of it.”

Disraeli said this: “Everything comes if a man will only wait … a human being with a settled purpose must accomplish it, and nothing can resist a will that will stake even existence for its fulfillment.”

William James said: “We need only in cold blood act as if the thing in question were real, and it will become infallibly real by growing into such a connection with our life that it will become real. It will become so knit with habit and emotion that our interests in it will be those which characterize belief.” 
He continues, ” … only you must, then, really wish these things, and wish them exclusively, and not wish at the same time a hundred other incompatible things just as strongly.”

My old friend Dr. Norman Vincent Peale put it this way: “If you think in negative terms, you will get negative results. If you think in positive terms, you will achieve positive results.” 
George Bernard Shaw said: “People are always blaming their circumstances for what they are. I don’t believe in circumstances. The people who get on in this world are the people who get up and look for the circumstances they want, and if they can’t find them, make them.”

Well, it’s pretty apparent, isn’t it?   We become what we think about. 

A person who is thinking about a concrete and worthwhile goal is going to reach it, because that’s what he’s thinking about. 
Conversely, the person who has no goal, who doesn’t know where he’s going, and whose thoughts must therefore be thoughts of confusion, anxiety, fear, and worry will thereby create a life of frustration, fear, anxiety and worry. And if he thinks about nothing … he becomes nothing.


AS YE SOW, SO SHALL YE REAP

The human mind is much like a farmer’s land. The land gives the farmer a choice. He may plant in that land whatever he chooses. The land doesn’t care what is planted. It’s up to the farmer to make the decision. 
The mind, like the land, will return what you plant, but it doesn’t care what you plant. If the farmer plants too seeds and one a seed of corn, the other nightshade, a deadly poison, waters and takes care of the land, what will happen?

Remember, the land doesn’t care. It will return poison in just as wonderful abundance as it will corn. So up come the two plants and one corn, one poison as it’s written in the Bible, “As ye sow, so shall ye reap.”

The human mind is far more fertile, far more incredible and mysterious than the land, but it works the same way. It doesn’t care what we plant … success … or failure. A concrete, worthwhile goal … or confusion, misunderstanding, fear, anxiety, and so on. But what we plant it must return to us.

The problem is that our mind comes as standard equipment at birth. It’s free. And things that are given to us for nothing, we place little value on. Things that we pay money for, we value.

The paradox is that exactly the reverse is true. 

Everything that’s really worthwhile in life came to us free and our minds, our souls, our bodies, our hopes, our dreams, our ambitions, our intelligence, our love of family and children and friends and country. All these priceless possessions are free.
But the things that cost us money are actually very cheap and can be replaced at any time. A good man can be completely wiped out and make another fortune. He can do that several times. Even if our home burns down, we can rebuild it. But the things we got for nothing, we can never replace.

Our mind can do any kind of job we assign to it, but generally speaking, we use it for little jobs instead of big ones. So decide now. What is it you want? Plant your goal in your mind. It’s the most important decision you’ll ever make in your entire life.

Do you want to excel at your particular job? Do you want to go places in your company … in your community? Do you want to get rich?

All you have got to do is plant that seed in your mind, care for it, work steadily toward your goal, and it will become a reality.
It not only will, there’s no way that it cannot. You see, that’s a law and like the laws of Sir Isaac Newton, the laws of gravity. If you get on top of a building and jump off, you’ll always go down and you’ll never go up.

And it’s the same with all the other laws of nature. They always work. They’re inflexible. 
Think about your goal in a relaxed, positive way. 
Picture yourself in your mind’s eye as having already achieved this goal. 
See yourself doing the things you will be doing when you have reached your goal.

Every one of us is the sum total of our own thoughts. 
We are where we are because that’s exactly where we really want or feel we deserve to be and whether we’ll admit that or not. 

Each of us must live off the fruit of our thoughts in the future, because what you think today and tomorrow and next month and next year and will mold your life and determine your future. You’re guided by your mind.

I remember one time I was driving through e a s t e r n Arizona and I saw one of those giant earthmoving machines roaring along the road with what looked like 30 tons of dirt in it and a tremendous, incredible machine and and there was a little man perched way up on top with the wheel in his hands, guiding it. As I drove along I was struck by the similarity of that machine to the human mind. 
Just suppose you’re sitting at the controls of such a vast source of energy. Are you going to sit back and fold your arms and let it run itself into a ditch? Or are you going to keep both hands firmly on the wheel and control and direct this power to a specific, worthwhile purpose? 
It’s up to you. You’re in the driver’s seat. 

You see, the very law that gives us success is a double-edged sword. We must control our thinking. The same rule that can lead people to lives of success, wealth, happiness, and all the things they ever dreamed of and that very same law can lead them into the gutter. It’s all in how they use it … for good or for bad. 

That is The Strangest Secret!
Do what the experts since the dawn of recorded history have told us to do:
 pay the price, by becoming the person you want to become. 

It’s not nearly as difficult as living unsuccessfully.

The moment you decide on a goal to work toward, you’re immediately a successful person and you are then in that rare group of people who know where they’re going. 
Out of every hundred people, you belong to the top five. 

Don’t concern yourself too much with how you are going to achieve your goal and leave that completely to a power greater than yourself. 

All you have to do is know where you’re going. The answers will come to you of their own accord, and at the right time.

Start today. You have nothing to lose and but you have your whole life to win.


30-DAY ACTION IDEAS FOR PUTTING THE STRANGEST SECRET TO WORK FOR YOU

For the next 30-days follow each of these steps every day until you have achieved your goal.

1. Write on a card what it is you want more that anything else
. It may be more money. Perhaps you’d like to double your income or make a specific amount of money. It may be a beautiful home. It may be success at your job. It may be a particular position in life. It could be a more harmonious family.

Write down on your card specifically what it is you want. Make sure it’s a single goal and clearly defined.
You needn’t show it to anyone, but carry it with you so that you can look at it several times a day. Think about it in a cheerful, relaxed, positive way each morning when you get up, and immediately you have something to work for and something to get out of bed for, something to live for.
Look at it every chance you get during the day and just before going to bed at night.
As you look at it, remember that you must become what you think about, and since you’re thinking about your goal, you realize that soon it will be yours. In fact, it’s really yours the moment you write it down and begin to think about it.

2. Stop thinking about what it is you fear. 
Each time a fearful or negative thought comes into your mind, replace it with a mental picture of your positive and worthwhile goal. And there will come a time when you’ll feel like giving up. It’s easier for a human being to think negatively than positively. That’s why only five percent are successful! You must begin now to place yourself in that group.

“Act as though it were impossible to fail,” as Dorothea Brande said. No matter what your goal and if you’ve kept your goal before you every day and you’ll wonder and marvel at this new life you’ve found.

3. Your success will always be measured by the quality and quantity of service you render. 
Most people will tell you that they want to make money, without understanding this law. The only people who make money work in a mint. The rest of us must earn money. This is what causes those who keep looking for something for nothing, or a free ride, to fail in life. Success is not the result of making money; earning money is the result of success and and success is in direct proportion to our service.

Most people have this law backwards. It’s like the man who stands in front of the stove and says to it: “Give me heat and then I’ll add the wood.” How many men and women do you know, or do you suppose there are today, who take the same attitude toward life? There are millions.

We’ve got to put the fuel in before we can expect heat. Likewise, we’ve got to be of service first before we can expect money
. Don’t concern yourself with the money. Be of service … build … work … dream … create! Do this and you’ll find there is no limit to the prosperity and abundance that will come to you.

Don’t start your test until you’ve made up your mind to stick with it. If you should fail during your first 30 days and by that I mean suddenly find yourself overwhelmed by negative thoughts and simply start over again from that point and go 30 more days. Gradually, your new habit will form, until you find yourself one of that wonderful minority to whom virtually nothing is impossible.

Above all … don’t worry! Worry brings fear, and fear is crippling.
The only thing that can cause you to worry during your test is trying to do it all yourself. Know that all you have to do is hold your goal before you; everything else will take care of itself.

Take this 30-day test, then repeat it … then repeat it again. Each time it will become more a part of you until you’ll wonder how you could have ever have lived any other way. Live this new way and the floodgates of abundance will open and pour over you more riches than you may have dreamed existed. Money? Yes, lots of it. But what’s more important, you’ll have peace … you’ll be in that wonderful minority who lead calm, cheerful, successful lives.



Learn more about Earl Nightingale and his many timeless books and audio programs.
The Strangest Secret
The Strangest Secret Article by: Earl Nightingale


See more at: 

The unending journey to better understanding




Solitude


"The worst solitude is to be destitute of sincere friendship." - Francis Bacon

"No man will ever unfold the capacities of his own intellect who does not at least checker his life with solitude."
 - Thomas de Quincey





He who Hesitates...

"It's not the critic who counts, not the one who points out how the strong man stumbled or how the doer of deeds might have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena; whose face is marred with the sweat and dust and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs and comes up short again and again; who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions and spends himself in a worthy cause and who, at best knows the triumph of high achievement and who at worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat." 
(Theodore Roosevelt, 1858-1919, 26th US President and 1906 Nobel Peace Prize-winner.)
 PAY:

Prioritize your
Activities by
Yield

Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow.
-Albert Einstein







Haskap Berry


 
 
HASKAP is the Japanese name for Lonicera caerulea. It has also been known as 'Blue Honeysuckle', 'Honeyberry', 'Edible Honeysuckle' and 'Sweet Berry Honeysuckle'. When translated into English, it is sometimes spelled as Hascap, Haskaap and Hasukappu.

Haskap Canada

haskap.ca/
 
 

The Haskap Canada Association

Haskap BerryHASKAP is the Japanese name for Lonicera caerulea. It has also been known as ‘Blue Honeysuckle’, ‘Honeyberry’, ‘Edible Honeysuckle’ and ‘Sweet Berry Honeysuckle’. When translated into English, it is sometimes spelled as Hascap, Haskaap and Hasukappu.
Haskap Canada Association (HCA) is a not for profit national organization that was developed out of the necessity to have one common entity that producers, plant breeders and consumers could contact for information and assistance.

PRIME DIRECTIVES

  • To promote the production and marketing of Haskap in Canada and abroad.
  • To assist our members in finding processing and marketing opportunities for Canadian grown haskap.
  • To acquire funding for haskap research and development.
  • To facilitate information and technology transfer from research programs to industry.
Haskap CanadaHaskap Canada Logo

So, if you are a backyard gardener or looking to grow an orchard you’ve come to the right website.  Look under the ‘Find’ link for where to purchase bushes for your garden or orchard, products, and more! Check out our blog (the link on the right hand side of the site) for more information on up-to-date research, events, and tutorials.
HASKAP DAYS 2016
Please join the University of Saskatchewan Fruit Program’s 3 days of all things Haskap!
JULY 7, 2016. HASKAP INTRO COURSE AT U. OF SK
JULY 8, 2016. HASKAP DAY AT U. OF SK
JULY 9, 2016. HASKAP CANADA TOUR OF HASKAP FARMS
For more information go to:
http://www.fruit.usask.ca/extension.html

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Catch life as it flows


"When the pain of being the same becomes greater than the pain of being different, you change."   - Deepak Chopra
 



'The idea of Zen is to catch life as it flows' - D.T. Suzuki





"The most ancient traveler in the universe is love." - Swami Rama



Things You Can Do To Change Your Life

CHANGE YOUR LIFE


Things You Can Do To Change Your Life 


    You are constantly changing, but it’s hard to notice.

    It’s not even a question of if you’re changing. It’s a question of in which direction are you changing.

    Below are things you can do to change your life:

    Take small steps. Enjoy the process. Have fun.

    Know your Current Situation and where you want to go from there.  It helps to break big goals down into manageable steps.


    Be Patient

    Be determined to succeed. 


    Face Your Fears

    No Excuses

     Take Responsibility

       Flow  
    narrow Focus

    Read

    Change is inevitable. It’s all about in what direction you’re changing.

    Risk Failure
    You will make mistakes.

    And you won’t even know if they are mistakes when you make them, because mistakes and failures are 
skipping stones to success.


The Science and Practise of Happiness



Uploaded on Jul 1, 2011

Is happiness a skill? Modern neuroscientific research and the wisdom of ancient contemplative traditions converge in suggesting that happiness is the product of skills that can be enhanced through training and such training exemplifies how transforming the mind can change the brain. 

Kent Berridge, Richie Davidson, and Daniel Gilbert speak at the Aspen Ideas Festival
.



Hitler, the Tiger and Me



Documentary telling the story of Judith Kerr, creator of well-loved children's books.
From BBC's Imagine series.

Hitler, the Tiger and Me

https://youtu.be/LgKbGQMixUw






Sunday, November 20, 2016

EMOTIONAL AGILITY.




Susan A David, Ph.D.
@SusanDavid_PhD

Author EMOTIONAL AGILITY. Psychologist. Management Consult. Researcher. @Harvardbiz-er. Cofounder @InstofCoaching Harvard. FREE quiz: http://bit.ly/ea-quiz
Boston, Massachusetts
susandavid.com
Joined December 2010







Link: http://www.susandavid.com/#ea-praise



"The most important thing to remember is that whatever you're feeling at the moment is okay." @businessinsider http://buff.ly/2gi2BGe















THE BOOK







 
emotional agility
 



emotional agility

get unstuck, embrace change, and thrive in work and life


The way we navigate our inner world – our everyday thoughts, emotions, and self-stories – is the single most important determinant of our life success. It drives our actions, careers, relationships, happiness, health; everything. For example: Do we let our self-doubts, failings, shame, fear, or anger hold us back? Can we be determined, persevering toward key life goals, but just as importantly, have the insight and courage to recognize when these goals are not serving us, and adapt?

In EMOTIONAL AGILITY: Get Unstuck, Embrace Change, and Thrive in Work and Life (Avery, On sale September 2016, Hardcover & Ebook), Susan David, Ph.D. a renowned psychologist and expert on emotions, happiness, and achievement, draws on her more than twenty years of research to show that emotionally agile people are not immune to stresses and setbacks. The key difference is they know how to gain critical insight about situations and interactions from their feelings, and use this knowledge to adapt, align their values and actions, and make changes to bring the best of themselves forward.

Emotional agility is a process that enables us to navigate life’s twists and turns with self-acceptance, clear-sightedness, and an open mind. The process isn’t about ignoring difficult emotions and thoughts. It’s about holding those emotions and thoughts loosely, facing them courageously and compassionately, and then moving past them to ignite change in your life.
In EMOTIONAL AGILITY, Dr. David shares four key concepts:
  • Showing Up: Instead of ignoring difficult thoughts and emotions or overemphasizing ‘positive thinking’, facing into your thoughts, emotions and behaviors willingly, with curiosity and kindness. 
  • Stepping Out: Detaching from, and observing your thoughts and emotions to see them for what they are—just thoughts, just emotions. Essentially, learning to see yourself as the chessboard, filled with possibilities, rather than as any one piece on the board, confined to certain preordained moves.  
  • Walking Your Why: Your core values provide the compass that keeps you moving in the right direction. Rather than being abstract ideas, these values are the true path to willpower, resilience and effectiveness.  
  • Moving On: Small deliberate tweaks to your mindset, motivation, and habits – in ways that are infused with your values, can make a powerful difference in your life. The idea is to find the balance between challenge and competence, so that you’re neither complacent nor overwhelmed.  You’re excited, enthusiastic, invigorated. 
Drawing on her deep research, decades of expert consulting, and her own experience overcoming adversity after losing her father at a young age, Dr. David shows how anyone can thrive in an uncertain world by becoming more emotionally agile. Written with authority, wit, and empathy, EMOTIONAL AGILITY serves as a roadmap for real behavioral change -- a new way of acting that will help you to reincorporate your most troubling feelings as a source of energy and creativity, and live the life you want. EMOTIONAL AGILITY will help you live your most successful life whoever you are and whatever you face.


Source: http://www.susandavid.com/new-index/#about-the-book-2





Wednesday, November 16, 2016

How can mindfulness change your life"Jon Kabat Zin.



 
How can mindfulness change your life Jon Kabat Zin talks about how it works. https://sites.google.com/site/healthi...
The history of clinical stress Jon Kabat Zinn (click subtitles for the
French version) The Centre for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care,
and Society is a visionary force and global leader in mind-body
medicine. For thirty years, we have pioneered the integration of
mindfulness meditation and other approaches based on mindfulness in
traditional medicine and health through patient care, academic medical
research and vocational training, and in society in general through
various outreach initiatives and public service. Directed by Saki F.
Santorelli, EDD, MA, since 2000 and founded in 1995 by Jon Kabat-Zinn,
Ph.D., of the Centre is an outgrowth of the famous Stress Reduction
Clinic - the oldest and the largest university medical centre based on
the reduction of stress in the world. Association for the Development of
Mindfulness http://www.association-mindfulness.org
https://sites.google.com/site/healthi...
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D2iYp...
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZikN0...





Tuesday, November 15, 2016

LEONARD COHEN - The Last Interview (September 2016)


 
Published on Nov 10, 2016
David Remnick from The New Yorker shared yesterday his last interview with Leonard Cohen on September 2016.

» Subscribe: http://bit.ly/2fxVDNN

» The New Yorker
http://www.newyorker.com

» Photographs: Wizard Varnish, Miojo Indie, Alex Belcourt, Lian Lunson, Alexander W. Thomas, Simone Joyner
(For some photos I could not identify the photographer. If someone can help, I'll appreciate. Thanks!)

»
Leonard Cohen, who died this week, was one of our greatest
songwriters—Bob Dylan told Cohen that he considered him his nearest
rival—and is a figure of almost cult-like devotion among fans. He began
as a poet in the vein of Allen Ginsberg and Frank O’Hara before
releasing his first album, in 1967. Suffering from terrible anxiety, not
much tamed by alcohol and drugs, he conquered his fear of performing
onstage after decades of Zen practice. David Remnick sat down with Cohen
this summer at his home in Los Angeles to discuss his career, spiritual
influences, triumphant final tours, and preparing for his end. “I am
ready to die,” Cohen said. He was already suffering from a number of
health problems. “At a certain point, if you still have your marbles and
are not faced with serious financial challenges, you have a chance to
put your house in order. It’s a clichĂ©, but it’s underestimated as an
analgesic on all levels. Putting your house in order, if you can do it,
is one of the most comforting activities, and the benefits of it are
incalculable.”
Remnick’s Profile of Cohen offers a look into the introspection of the musician’s final days:
"There
is probably no more touring ahead. What is on Cohen’s mind now is
family, friends, and the work at hand. “I’ve had a family to support, so
there’s no sense of virtue attached to it,” he said. “I’ve never sold
widely enough to be able to relax about money. I had two kids and their
mother to support and my own life. So there was never an option of
cutting out. Now it’s a habit. And there’s the element of time, which is
powerful, with its incentive to finish up. Now I haven’t gotten near
finishing up. I’ve finished up a few things. I don’t know how many other
things I’ll be able to get to, because at this particular stage I
experience deep fatigue. . . . There are times when I just have to lie
down. I can’t play anymore, and my back goes fast also. Spiritual
things, baruch Hashem”—thank God—“have fallen into place, for which I am
deeply grateful.”"

» On Paradise Lost old songs will be
revisited. Some of them are very old but memory must be preserved. On
the other hand, new music is always present. Like everything else, music
don't stop!
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    Music

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Patience

“Patience is not an absence of action; rather it is timing. It waits on the right time to act."

What can we expect from President-elect Trump?

Hillary Clinton supporters following election returns at the Javits Convention Center on Tuesday night. Credit Sam Hodgson for The New York Times
I began election night writing a column that started with words from an immigrant, my friend Lesley Goldwasser, who came to America from Zimbabwe in the 1980s. Surveying our political scene a few years ago, Lesley remarked to me: “You Americans kick around your country like it’s a football. But it’s not a football. It’s a FabergĂ© egg. You can break it.”
With Donald Trump now elected president, I have more fear than I’ve ever had in my 63 years that we could do just that — break our country, that we could become so irreparably divided that our national government will not function.
From the moment Trump emerged as a candidate, I’ve taken seriously the possibility that he could win; this column never predicted otherwise, although it certainly wished for it. That doesn’t mean the reality of it is not shocking to me.
As much as I knew that it was a possibility, the stark fact that a majority of Americans wanted radical, disruptive change so badly and simply did not care who the change agent was, what sort of role model he could be for our children, whether he really had any ability to execute on his plan — or even really had a plan to execute on — is profoundly disturbing.
Before I lay out all my fears, is there any silver lining to be found in this vote? I’ve been searching for hours, and the only one I can find is this: I don’t think Trump was truly committed to a single word or policy he offered during the campaign, except one phrase: “I want to win.”
But Donald Trump cannot be a winner unless he undergoes a radical change in personality and politics and becomes everything he was not in this campaign. He has to become a healer instead of a divider; a compulsive truth-teller rather than a compulsive liar; someone ready to study problems and make decisions based on evidence, not someone who just shoots from the hip; someone who tells people what they need to hear, not what they want to hear; and someone who appreciates that an interdependent world can thrive only on win-win relationships, not zero-sum ones.
I can only hope that he does. Because if he doesn’t, all of you who voted for him — overlooking all of his obvious flaws — because you wanted radical, disruptive change, well, you’re going to get it.
I assume that Trump will not want to go down as the worst president in history, let alone the one who presided over the deepest fracturing of our country since the Civil War. It would shake the whole world. Therefore, I can only hope that he will, as president, seek to surround himself with the best people he can, which surely doesn’t include the likes of Rudy Giuliani or Newt Gingrich, let alone the alt-right extremists who energized his campaign.
But there is also a deeply worrying side to Trump’s obsession with “winning.” For him, life is always a zero-sum game: I win, you lose. But when you’re running the United States of America, everything can’t be a zero-sum game.
“The world only stays stable when countries are embedded in win-win relationships, in healthy interdependencies,” observed Dov Seidman, the C.E.O. of LRN, which advises companies on leadership, and the author of the book “How.”
For instance, America undertook the Marshall Plan after World War II — giving millions of dollars to Europe — to build it up into a trading partner and into a relationship that turned out to be of great mutual benefit. Does Trump understand that? Do those who voted for him understand how many of their jobs depend on America being embedded in healthy interdependencies around the world?
How do I explain Trump’s victory? Way too soon to say for sure, but my gut tells me that it has much less to do with trade or income gaps and much more to do with culture and many Americans’ feeling of “homelessness.”
There is nothing that can make people more angry or disoriented than feeling they have lost their home. For some it is because America is becoming a minority-majority country and this has threatened the sense of community of many middle-class whites, particularly those living outside the more cosmopolitan urban areas.
For others it is the dizzying whirlwind of technological change we’re now caught up in. It has either wiped out their job or transformed their workplace in ways they find disorienting — or has put stressful demands on them for lifelong learning. When the two most important things in your life are upended — the workplace and community that anchor you and give you identity — it’s not surprising that people are disoriented and reach for the simplistic solutions touted by a would-be strongman.
What I do know for certain is this: The Republican Party and Donald Trump will have control of all the levers of government, from the courts to the Congress to the White House. That is an awesome responsibility, and it is all going to be on them. Do they understand that?
Personally, I will not wish them ill. Too much is at stake for my country and my children. Unlike the Republican Party for the last eight years, I am not going to try to make my president fail. If he fails, we all fail. So yes, I will hope that a better man emerges than we saw in this campaign.
But at the moment I am in anguish, frightened for my country and for our unity. And for the first time, I feel homeless in America.
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