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Do something

You can put yourself on a better path in life starting today, but it requires you to actually do some things.

You must stop perpetuating your own dissatisfaction with yourself, your career, your relationships, or your life by doing nothing. You must commit to no longer settling for the path of least resistance. You must commit to working towards your goals instead of relying on wishful thinking. And you must be willing to deal with life’s challenges without allowing yourself to be overcome by them.

Excerpt from: Lessons Learned from The Path Less Traveled Volume 1

“They deserve it”

People who hate on other people often justify their actions with “they deserve it”. And by doing so, they excuse themselves for their own bad behavior. Because “It isn’t really bad behavior if the other person deserved it, is it?”

And so we have one person hating on another person. And another person hating on another. And another on another. And so on. And everyone excuses themselves for their negative behavior.

If your negative words or actions were directed at someone you love, would you excuse them as easily as you do when you direct them at those you think deserve it?

If it makes you feel good to put other people down, what does that say about the kind of person you are? And is that who you truly want to be?

Corruption

Corruption: dishonest or fraudulent conduct

“With the obvious exception of the numerous people who worked among us that we no longer wish to associate with because they were caught for corruption, we’re not corrupt.” says the corrupt person working for a corrupt organization seeking to protect another corrupt person in that organization from being caught for corruption.

Rinse. Repeat.

Don’t do what you don’t approve of

It often starts with rightly standing up against something you don’t approve of. But if you’re not careful, you begin to take on behaviors of your opponents and act in ways that you originally disapproved of.

Dammit, Zero. If only you could have found a better way to suggest that someone who was behaving badly act better than by pointing out that they weren’t setting a good example for the millions of people who follow them.

I mean, what if they actually see what you said about what they shared with millions of people? What if they’re embarrassed by it? What if they get angry with you for pointing out their bad behavior?

Or what if — just for a second — they think about what I actually said and — maybe, just maybe — it has the potential to get them to remember the type of person they want to be and actually change their approach and begin to set a better example for the MILLIONS of people who follow them?

I’ll take the possibility of unsettling someone for a moment any day for a chance at getting a person with a tremendous amount of influence to set a good example for millions of people.

Refuse to be blind

Refuse to be blind to the impact your insults, hateful remarks, and derogatory statements intended to hurt those you oppose are having on the world. Every time you justify acting badly because someone else is acting badly, you are giving permission to other people to do the same.

You’re not making the world a better place by adding hate, you’re just making the world a hateful place.

If you want more [ kindness – love – level-headedness – logic – tolerance – understanding – respect…] in the world, put some there.

It must be ok.

You saw someone standing up for something you believe in. And you didn’t like how they did it, but you saw other people cheer. So it must be OK.

So one day, while standing up for something you believe in, you go against your values by acting badly when you do it. But as badly as you act, those who agree with you still cheer. So it must be OK.

And while you were basking in the glow of being approved of by people willing to overlook your bad behavior because they agree with your message, someone else was watching and thinking, “It must be OK.”

The messenger matters

If the person representing your opinion or desired way of life is exhibiting signs of bad behavior when they do it, you can be certain that the majority of people the message is intended for will focus on the bad behavior and ignore the message.

You can cheer on the champions of your cause all you want, but if they’re not setting a good example when they represent your ideas, they’re doing more to ensure that your cause or organization will be perceived badly than they are in changing anyone’s mind.

Those who represent you aren’t doing you any favors if they’re not setting a good example when they do it. And if they’re communicating your ideas in a way that your opposition isn’t receptive to, you can be almost certain that the bad behavior is what they see, not the ideas.

Just because you agree with the message being shared doesn’t mean you should tolerate or ignore the bad behavior of the person conveying it.

Getting your money’s worth

The fact is, we often pay much more for the expensive features that a product offers than we would if we simply purchased something that met the demands of what we needed it for. And then we often fail to get our money’s worth from this product because the expensive features we paid for were never the driving force behind why we wanted it in the first place.

A sentence on a page

Lessons Learned from The Path Less Traveled by Zero Dean

If you’re not where you want to be in life, always remember that what you’re feeling is just a sentence on a page in an entire book that makes up the story of your life. And the general feel & outcome of your story is written with the actions you take on a daily basis.

— Zero Dean (@ZeroDean) January 3, 2019

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