12 Pieces of Unwise Conventional Wisdom – Day 222 of 365 Days to a Better You

Axioms, idioms, proverbs, aphorisms; whatever you call them these tiny tidbits of “wisdom” permeate the popular consciousness. Many are very useful. Others, such as those below, offer abysmal and disempowering life advice.

  1. Better the devil you know than the one you don’t. This is one of those things a protective mother might tell you to keep you safe. It sounds like risk aversion advice, but it’s worse. It acknowledges that you’re dealing with a person or situation worthy of being called “the devil,” but encourages you stay put because taking a chance on change is supposedly more dangerous.
  2. Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak and remove all doubt. Abraham Lincoln said this one so it must be true, right? Well, it’s pithy and could be true in some situations. However, most people have a hard time finding their voices. They don’t speak up, make their contribution because of fear of appearing foolish. That’s what makes this bad advice. The team, the country, the world is better off when everyone feels empowered to contribute without fear.
  3. Curiosity killed the cat. This is another one that assumes the worst and culls one of our most important traits as humans – our curiosity. Celebrate and be inspired by curiosity. Don’t fear it,
  4. Do as I say not as I do. This one requires little commentary. Never use this in someone else and never let it be used in you.
  5. Do not upset the Apple cart. Um, look around at the world. We need more people willing to upset the apple cart not fewer.
  6. East is east, west is west, and never the twain shall meet. This one is a battlecry for dogma. What is is. There are absolutes that can’t be changed. So why try? Nonsense. Beyond birth and death little else is unchangeable.
  7. You can’t teach and old dog new tricks. This one claims that once you reach a certain age, it’s too late to learn or change or that people can never change. Neither is absolutely true. As long as there’s breath there’s hope. It’s never too late to be the person you came here to be.
  8. All’s fair in love and war. Here’s a mindset that’s simply justification for bad behavior. No wonder relationships are in such chaos in our culture. Love is not a competitive sport. It’s not an excuse to become cut-throat. Aspire to something higher in your relationships.
  9. Every man has his price. This assumes that all people are unprincipled if tempted enough. It also is saying that normalizes this idea.
  10. Fight fire with fire. Here’s the mantra of people content to be vengeful and get even. Consider putting fires out in the world rather than pouring oil on them.
  11. Great minds think alike. I get that this one is usually said in fun when two people have the same thought. In truth, though, great minds think for themselves.
  12. Ignorance is bliss. This is among the most commonly used on this list and among the worst advice. It promotes apathy, disempowerment, and dependency. A strong human being ought never live in more ignorance than his or her seeking to date has left undiscovered.

There are more of these and I may do a second post on this down the line. Just because you’ve heard something said you’re whole life like it’s wise, doesn’t mean it is.

You’re all amazing. Take that to the bank! Have a great Sunday.

Ray

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RayQuotes #4

Big, Crazy, Ideas – Day 221 of 365 Days to a Better You

Count me a fool for big, crazy ideas and a dolt for big flipping dreams. Forgive me for not realizing I should have given up my idealism because I have a certain number of candles on my birthday cake. Pardon me for not accepting the belief that being “an adult” means capitulation to small thinking.

There’s been a definite theme in my world this week. I’ve been in a number of personal and online conversations this week where people have conveyed to me that I should cease aiming for the stars for our country and our world and get some realism. I should accept that what is is and it will never change.

No, that’s not what these good people thought they were conveying. They thought they were being logical, practical, and real. They thought they were talking me back from the edge of what we all know can’t be.

To that, I say thank you but no thank you. When I look around, I see a world stuck for the lack of big thinking. I see people sad because they “grew up” and stopped pushing for their dreams and their ideals. They packed it in, put on the armor of hardened dogma and “status quoism” and called it good.

Well, as long as I draw breath, that will never be me! I’ll never cease believing that the richest nation in the history of the world can figure out an enlightened approach to ensuring access to healthcare for all its citizens. I refuse to buy into the idea that we must fix every pothole on Earth before we can reach for the stars. I will never surrender to the idea that hatred and perpetual war is a natural, normal state for the human race. I will always believe we can create a just society where every single person lives in dignity and genuine abundance of mind, body, and spirit.

If I have to die on these “crazy” hills, I’m in. If you ask me to apologize for seeing a better humanity and a better world, I decline. I’d rather be labeled a crazy dreamer than succumb to the death of small thinking.

WHO’S WITH ME?

I love you all. Be crazy for your BIG dreams today.

Ray

The Power of L.O.S.S. – Day 220 of 365 Days to a Better You

Today’s Affirmation:
I accept my losses and learn from them! Defeat is simply opportunity disguised as setback.

Many people see losing or a loss as a very negative thing. Like anything else, losing is all in how you look at it. A well-studied loss can be every bit as valuable in our journey as a victory. I’m not saying that losing is more fun than winning or that winning isn’t valuable. Clearly, we all want to win.

The truth is that most winners had to experience losing before they ever succeeded. So what if you chose to look at your losses in a slightly different light? A loss might be seen as Lessons and Obstacles on your way to Stunning Successes.

  • L – Lessons: Losing nearly always provides some lessons and some clues on how to improve. If you pay attention to the things that contributed to the loss, you can apply those lessons to future situations. Given time, you find the winning combination.
  • O – Obstacles – Losses are clearly obstacles. After all, your goal was to win or succeed. However, an obstacle might challenge you to improve or increase your determination to succeed. Used as mental and emotional leverage, a good obstacle can propel you to future victories.
  • S – Stunning – Losing can get you down and make you feel unworthy. In that dark moment of loss, remember to see what a stunning miracle you are. You are a diamond in the rough slowly being polished into something very special.
  • S – Successes – Success is that moment of break through when the journey of loss has been transformed into victory. The lessons, obstacles, and seeing how stunning you are kept you on track to enjoy the sweet taste of success.

So you see a loss is never loss. It’s an opportunity, an invitation to a journey of self-discovery, stretching yourself, and new achievement.

Follow your bliss! Experience your bliss! Become your bliss!

Ray

Daily Video Affirmation #37 – I AM Recession Proof Affirmation

They’re at it again. The media and politicians are starting to use the “R” word – recession. I’ve noticed over time that recessions are as much mass psychological events as they are mass economic events. In fact, I’d argue the former create the behaviors that create the latter once the seed is planted in enough heads.

Today’s affirmation is meant to affirm that you will come out on top regardless of the economy.

Choose your thoughts wisely!

Ray

Seven Ways to Lose the Drama in Your Life – Day 219 of 365 Days to a Better You

Drama is awesome in a movie, but taxing in our lives. How do you minimize the drama in your life? Based on feedback from readers, TinyBuddha.com compiled a list of seven things you can do to reduce the drama.

  1. Recognize when you’re the source of the drama. If you want to go on a drama diet, start with you. You’re the person you have the most control over. You might find, when considered beyond the heat of the moment, that you started or contributed to your last dramatic episode.
  2. Change your perspective. Is the situation going to matter in a year or even 10 minutes from now? Avoid making mountains out of molehills.
  3. Don’t feed into other people’s drama. So, you didn’t cause the drama, but did your pour oil on their fire of drama? Let them have their moment and move on.
  4. Reconsider unhealthy relationships. Are there people who bring nothing but drama to you? Harsh as it might sound, you may have to cut ties to cut the drama. This is, of course, a balance. If a person brings real value in your life but lots of drama too, you may try having a dispassionate conversation with them to see if you can come to an agreement to reduce drama.
  5. Be clear with other people. Sometimes drama is just miscommunication. Both people are reacting rather than responding to the situation. Go to your calm place and take the emotion out of it to get to clear communication.
  6. Be slow to label it drama. Sometimes it’s just a lack of patience or insight that causes us to call something drama. The other person might just really need you right now. Seen and understood in a different light the “drama” might just be a need for compassion.
  7. Learn from drama. This might be the most important one. Are you having the same drama over and over? Maybe the other person and you aren’t learning from past dramas. Get conscious. If you know something sets them off, do you really need to go there? Conversely, if you know your buttons are being pushed, get conscious and choose a different reaction or take some space.

Your life doesn’t have to be a constant soap opera, if you’ll take these steps to lose the drama.

You’re amazing! I just wanted to tell you that in case no one else reminds you today.

Ray

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