We Boomers and Gen –Xers are getting older and hopefully better, but not always is the case. Life and experiences take their toll on our ability to remain optimistic and not cynical. But getting the new old you back is our goal. And while surrounding yourself with better people is a great path to transformation, being able to surround yourself with you is the first challenge!So how do you know that the people around you are actually better, or richer, smarter or whatever, whatever…? As Lao Tzu said, “A journey begins with a single step,” so here’s your guide:
#1 Need - needing the company of others is the first obstacle to overcome. Be content with yourself and knowing that eventually everything works out in the end. Do not be needy of desperately wanting to be around others.
#2 Envy – we often think other people’s lives are so much better than our own and thus we are secretly jealous of them. Let it go. Everyone has their own issues. If everyone you knew were to come to a large table and all put their problems out in the open, most of us would choose to take back our own issues and struggles than swap for others.
#3 Judging – tied to envy is the norm to compare yourself with others and then of course judge their situation and outcome with our own. Cut it out - it doesn’t matter what you’ve done in life up to now, it matters most what you do next!
#4 Labels – we often want to align ourselves with an icon or label or a certain breed. Who cares, really? Especially when perceiving material things. Does it matter if you (or your children) have a Louis Vuitton handbag or drive a Mercedes or wear a Rolex? But if you or your desired peer group do have any of these things, refer to rules #2 and #3…
#5 Ego – Pride is good in small doses but that is about all. Who cares if you ate at the hot restaurant first or heard the hit song before the band was huge? Who cares if you’re correct or not? You do not like to hang out with ego-centric folks and guess what, neither do other sane people.
#6 Doubt – leave this at the door too. Become as a child and have no concerns or worries about foolish idiosyncrasies. You are as good as the best and no better than the rest, and worry is like a rocking chair - while it gives you something to do, it gets you nowhere. Until you believe that you “belong,” you won’t. And trust me, you belong!
#7 Control – bad things can happen to good people, such is life. Life isn’t fair. But trying to rope the wind is about as successful as trying to control your life and your life experiences. Embrace it! Get outside your comfort zone. Don't you think those pioneers in the early days at Apple Computers (NASDAQ:AAPL) had to overcome this too?
#8 – Image is a moving target so do not be afraid to “fail.” Babe Ruth said it best: “Every strike brings me closer to my next home run.” Plus, taking a “swing” is so much more fun than sitting on the bench of life! The most interesting people I’ve met are still uncertain of what they want to be when they grow up and they’re in their fifties! In a time when Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) is seemingly taking over the Earth, relax and enjoy your run.
#9 – Negativity doesn’t mean you lost a proton, it means you’ll lose a life that could have been so much more full and enjoyable. If nothing else, simply smile - always smile. Try it and you’ll be amazed at how easily this will work for you.
#10 – You will become the perfect “10” in your world for you when you can let go and let you! Pretend you woke up on a new planet every morning and when you walk out your door, see things in infant eyes. Ask questions, touch, explore. Live and enjoy the new old you!
Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.