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May 28, 2013 / Dale Melchin

The Strength to Make Your Own Determinations

The following excerpt is from Book Yourself Solid: The Fastest, Easiest, and Most Reliable System for Getting More Clients Than You Can Handle Even if You Hate Marketing and Selling. By Michael Port.
An old man, a boy, and a donkey were going to town. The boy rode on the donkey and the old man walked beside him. As they went along they passed some people who remarked it was a shame the old man was walking and the boy was riding. The man and boy thought maybe the critics were right, so they changed positions.
Later, they passed some people who remarked, “What a shame! He makes that little boy walk.” They then decided they both would walk.
Soon they passed some more people who thought they were stupid to walk when they had a decent donkey to ride. So they both rode the donkey.
Later, they passed some people who shamed them by saying how awful to put such a load on a poor donkey.
The boy and man said they were probably right, so they decided to carry the donkey. As they crossed the bridge, they lost their grip on the animal, and he fell into the river and drowned.
The moral of the story? If you try to please everyone, you might as well kiss your ass goodbye.
We could probably just have this be the post and call it a day.  However, there is so much that we can net out from this story.  There are 3 things that we can net out from it.
  1. You must determine what you are going to do and how you are going to get there, others be damned.  The problem with the man and the boy is that they were too interested in what others were say and not interested enough in getting to town and going to the market.  They may have been going to sell some other items, getting some things, or maybe they were going to sell the donkey.  I don’t know.  While the opinions are important and we should listen to others, we cannot simply change ourselves to conform to our environment at every whim.  We have to determine who we are going to work with and what we are going to offer.  This applies very well to vision and the outcomes we want in our lives.  We are all put on this earth with a purpose, what we are to do with our lives.  We have to listen to our authentic self and determine what our calling is and then get after it.  You are always going to have others who are experts in your life, but they are not experts in theirs.  When we cultivate the value that we have to offer, and put it out there value will inevitably come back to us.
  2. While yes, we do have make sure there is a market for what we are offering, we cannot allow ourselves to be jerked around by everyone.  That is a way of surrendering our power and self-determination to others and regardless of the situation surrendering our self-determination is never healthy.  Whether you are trying to get your life on track, sell a product, or get a message out, you have to narrow your focus.  That focus needs to be on yourself, and who benefits from you and what you are doing.
  3. Following the crowd will always have disastrous results.  The man and the boy lost a very valuable ass-et, pun intended.  I don’t think they had liability insurance back in the day when animals were vehicles but at this point the man and the boy were going to either have repurchase the animal to regain the benefits of having a pack animal or they were going to have to do without those benefits and carry whatever it is they were getting from town back to home.
It takes, discipline, strength and fortitude to block out the opinions of others and focus on your goal
What are you going to do to prevent yourself form losing your ass?
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