Do You Choose Hatred?

03fa21a1c8f5a3238936970e966add78There’s a lot of talk about hatred going on these days.

This phenomenon occurs daily, but really spikes up in four-year cycles when people appoint themselves political activists and take to the airwaves running their mouths over something they (mostly) don’t know much about.

I’ve never been an expert on politics, but I’ve observed that our political opinions are based largely on which television network we choose to watch, which newspaper we choose to read, and which Facebook posts we choose to believe.

Consequently, every time there’s an election, half the population goes through its “the sky is falling” phase. Every time. And guess what? The sky never falls.

But sadly, this counterproductive “Us against Them” (pick a side) mentality, which exists in Washington perpetually, spills over into the general population creating hatrid and anger, and damaging friendships and family relationships. And boy, does misery love company.

“Suddenly, I’m an expert on what’s going on and if you don’t agree with me, you’re stupid.” Oh yeah, and then there’s the “Please unfriend me now” plea.

Again, full disclosure, I’m more of a sports fan than a political expert. But its easy for me to opine that if half the population always hates and disagrees with our elected officials then the team never moves forward. It’s called divisiveness and “We the people” do it to ourselves. Technology and the internet have allowed “freedom of speech” to get way out of hand, but that’s another blog another time.

Sometimes a divided team can win (see the 77 Bronx Zoo Yankees), but normally we all need to be on the same page to create something great. Naive, I know.

Mirror, mirror on the wall; who’s the problem after all?

Anyway, if you’re really tired of hatred make different choices. Start by getting up and changing the channel. Maybe log off Facebook too.

 

On Leadership

“What is it that you love about leadership?”

That’s a question that was posed to me this morning by a woman on Facebook and, strangely, one that I hadn’t heard before.

As I sipped the day’s first cup of coffee, it didn’t take me long to realize the answer.

My first hero, as a little boy, was Joe Namath. Joe was the quarterback of the New York Jets who were a huge underdog in Super Bowl III. Nobody thought the Jets had a chance to win. Not the fans, not the media, and probably not even the majority of the players on the team. But when asked what HE thought about the Super Bowl, “Broadway Joe” as he was later nicknamed, said “We’ll win. I guarantee it.” He didn’t say it in a boastful way, yet he said it with an easy confidence. What transpired was the greatest upset in Super Bowl history.

Joe said it would be so!

So, by my definition, leadership isn’t just saying you’re going to do something. It’s saying it, believing it, inspiring that belief in others, and then being instrumental in helping them get it done. It’s a powerful word and a courageous and noble act.

What is your definition of leadership? What is it that YOU love (or like) about it?

Is it something that you seek, or something you strive to provide?

All great questions.

Joe Namath
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