June 15, 2008

What I’ve Learned

Posted in Life tagged , , at 2:48 pm by Andrew McMillen

Accept personal accountability for every action that you take. Realise that you alone control your actions. To let any external factor dictate what you say or do is to cede control.

Stasis is a dangerous state of being – a thousand times moreso for the young and unestablished. Be wary of those who are comfortable at a standstill. Adapt, adapt, adapt.

Disdain what you cannot have. Greene wrote that ignoring these things is the best revenge. Look to the past: not to remember past hurts or bear grudges, but to examine and learn from the mistakes you have made. Do not dwell on those who have passed you by. Treat their choice as an opportunity to improve yourself for the next candidate.

Create value. Build a new media presence.

W.C. Fields advised to never trust a man who doesn’t drink. Conversely, be wary of those who regularly drink to excess without concern for the consequences of their actions, both personal and interpersonal. The regular abuse of alcohol is nothing more than a mechanism for ceding control of one’s accountability. Recognise that their choice is indicative of greater inner issues, and walk away.

Create dialogues. It’s easy to contact almost anyone online. Use this to your advantage.

Read. There is no new problem you can have that someone hasn’t already solved and wrote about in a book. Furthermore, the web has allowed an incredible amount of voices to emerge. Once you’ve sifted through the garbage, follow those whose voices speak to you.

Write. If only for yourself. Keep a private blog and aim to write in it most days. If you haven’t already discovered the manner in which transcribing your thoughts allows you to view an issue with renewed clarity, you’ll be amazed. I can’t wait to look back at my private journal in ten years’ time. Hell, Ryan wrote that in six months’ time I’ll have discarded most of what I claim is important now. Through reading my archives, I’ve found that two months has been a consistent timeframe in which I’ve noticed enormous shifts in personal values.

Listen. Don’t just wait for your turn to speak. Don’t interrupt. If most people are happy to fill a conversation with their words, indulge them.

Communication is key. In a knowledge economy, income disparity exists primarily between those who can and cannot communicate. Read. Write. Learn to express your ideas clearly and succinctly. Communication is key.

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3 Comments

  1. John Pana said,

    Awesome post mate.

    On Greene’s, “Disdain what you cannot have”, I largely disagree with the word disdain. It’s almost as if he has he maintains an emotive response to something in his unconsciousness to rationalise a point of view, instead of understanding the nature of the issue, and accepting it.

    Once you have accepted the issue, good or bad, you no longer need a response. You can be unreactive towards it. It actually does not matter and you can use your energies for something more productive than ‘disdain’ or a ‘grudge’.

    Do you have a set of goals defined for yourself? Or are you just a naturally driven person?

  2. saint.id.au said,

    Good post. Completely agree with the whole ‘personal accountability’ thing and the online presence. I think that people need to know the differences between personal and professional. I should have the freedom to write something personal on a public forum without someone using that against me within the professional environment. In about 20-30 years time, when you have your Gen Xers in positions such as GM’s, CEO’s, etc they’ll be leaving personal online traces.

  3. saint.id.au said,

    ^ oops, I meant Gen Yers.


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