Here’s a cool little story about blame. Maybe you’ve heard it before.
“This is the story of four people named Everybody, Somebody, Anybody, and Nobody. There was an important job to be done and Everybody was asked to do it. Anybody could have done it, but Nobody did it.
Somebody got angry about that, because it was Everybody’s job. Everybody knew that Anybody could do it, but Nobody realized that Everybody wouldn’t do it.
Consequently, it wound up that Nobody told Anybody, so Everybody blamed Somebody. And nothing got done.”
Unfortunately, there was a time in my life when I blamed anything and anyone else, except for myself, for my lack of success. Not cool.
You cannot blame your way to success.
Personal responsibility is required. Blame is the arch enemy of personal responsibility. Therefore, blame is lame.
Do you choose blame or personal responsibility?
- Topics: ActivitiesAdversity, Diligence, Grit, Self-ControlCharacter Strengths & Personal DevelopmentDuncan Nuggets®Videos
A professor once asked me, “Al, in your opinion, why do students cheat?”
“Because they have an ineffective strategy for dealing with failure.”
Think about that. When people don’t know how to deal with failure they’ll do anything to avoid it.
Nobody wants to fail, but exceptional people aren’t afraid to fail. They develop a strategy.
1. Forgive yourself. The Duncan Nugget® that I probably quote the most is #21: Failure is only permanent if you quit. I might get sad. I might get mad. But I refuse to beat myself up about it.
2. Master the lesson. Analyze what went wrong and don’t do it again. Duh!
3. Work hard to get better. Learn and practice what you learned. If you don’t know how to improve then ask someone who knows what s/he is talking about.
That’s my strategy.
Million Dollar Question:
What is your strategy for dealing with failure?
Q: Hi Al, I have a 20 y/o daughter who has gone through two semesters at school. Two different schools. She doesn’t believe school is for her so she wanted to join the marines but her test score wasn’t high enough. We live in [a very small town] and jobs are hard to come by here. I realize she’s not alone in her quest for employment but I don’t know how to help her. I am worried and scared for her. Anything you can suggest will be greatly appreciated. —Phyllis F.
I just finished talking to a young lady who spends too much time worrying. She’s worried about getting off to a great start this semester. She’s worried about getting into graduate school. She’s worried about how she is going to do on her finals.
She hasn’t even been to a class yet!
- Topics: Adversity, Diligence, Grit, Self-ControlCharacter Strengths & Personal DevelopmentSelf-Awareness & Purpose
“Mr. Duncan, this is crazy! My biochemistry book costs $120!”
“Didn’t you just spend $125 getting your hair done?”
“So, it’s cool to spend that kind of cash on the outside of your head, but not on the inside?”
“I never looked at it like that, but real talk, Mr. Duncan, I gotta get my hair done.”
—conversation between Al Duncan and a college student
What’s in your head (and heart) determines what’s in your life.
Nice hats, expensive sunglasses, earrings, haircuts, and hairdos cost you thousands of dollars. A book on personal or professional development might cost you $25 and could help you make thousands, maybe millions, of dollars.
There’s nothing wrong with taking care of the outside of your head, but take care of the inside too.
Do you spend more time, money, and energy
on the outside or inside of your head?
- Topics: Adversity, Diligence, Grit, Self-ControlCharacter Strengths & Personal DevelopmentDuncan Nuggets®Videos
Sometimes, when it seems like you’re giving up…
You are really GETTING up and moving on.
Is it time to walk away or try harder?
- Topics: Adversity, Diligence, Grit, Self-ControlCharacter Strengths & Personal DevelopmentDuncan Nuggets®
I’m standing 3 feet away from my 5-yr old son, Mekhi. I call him. He doesn’t answer. Hmm…
I say his name a little louder, “Mekhi!”
Still no response. Grrr…
Believe it or not, he still doesn’t respond. I’m thinking, “Oh lord! My child is deaf.” But that’s not it. He can’t hear me because he’s watching his show. He’s focused.
If you’re a parent, you’ve experienced this. If you have parents, you’ve done this!
You’re probably thinking, “That is not focus. He was ignoring you.” Ha! I can see where you’re coming from, but wait. Isn’t that what focus is?
The ability to ignore anything that has nothing to do with the task at hand.
HINT: When engrossed in something you are passionate about, you have that ability.
What are you so passionate about
that you ignore all distractions and
focus on the task at hand?
- Topics: ActivitiesAdversity, Diligence, Grit, Self-ControlCharacter Strengths & Personal DevelopmentDuncan Nuggets®Goals, Productivity & Time ManagementLeadership & Other Soft SkillsPotential & PerformanceVideos
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