Symptom of a Critical Thinker

You are probably a critical thinker if you’re just as disapproving of bad arguments made for your position as you are of bad arguments made against your position.

You are probably not a critical thinker if you are outraged at poor logic, unfair reasoning, and discriminatory thinking only when it’s employed by advocates of the positions you oppose.

You Can’t Build a Business Without Doing Philosophy

Entrepreneurship is inherently philosophical. You can’t consistently succeed in the world of business without being rigorously committed to questioning reality and subjecting your creative ideas to empirical investigation. The entrepreneur must constantly ask himself or herself questions like “is there another way?” or “what assumptions am I making?” And when it’s time to look for answers, the entrepreneur is not afforded the luxury of hiding away in an ivory tower. Entrepreneurs must find their answers by engaging the world, by throwing their ideas against the solid wall of reality to see what truly sticks. 

What Really Concerns Me

I’m not worried about the irrational and insincere people who are determined to do wrong because of their hatred for truth, justice, and freedom.

I’m worried about all the rational and sincere people who don’t know what their rights are.

I’m worried about all the hard-working and open-minded people who haven’t been given compelling reasons for believing in their power, their potential, and their possibilities.

I’m terrified by the thought of those who, because they have not been taught how to think critically and creatively, do not know how to protect themselves from manipulation, exploitation, and oppression.

I’m worried about the people who long to be dreamers, creators, and revolutionaries, but who lack the support of mentors, allies, and communities that nurture self-knowledge, mental toughness, and spiritual well-being.

I’m worried about the innocent ones, the curious ones, and the compassionate ones who hold the keys to creating a freer world, but who lack the protection of systems and structures that can shelter them from violence.

There will be no place in this world for the wicked if we devote ourselves to equipping the people of integrity with the tools they need to defend and express their human dignity. I am not interested in screaming and yelling at those who have proven themselves to be too self-absorbed to hear the cries of the suffering. I am interested in using whatever powers I have to help build a better world and inspire others to do the same. I have little time for bemoaning the irrational and insincere. I’m too busy trying to liberate the hearts and minds of those who love the truth and are willing to follow it wherever it leads.

In cases where we must, let us defend ourselves against the forces of evil. But let us not forget that the war for freedom is only won to the degree that we invest knowledge and power into the forces of good. When the lovers of truth know what they’re capable of and choose to act on that knowledge, the lovers of evil will no longer prevail.

Broadening My Horizons

Today I choose to negotiate my sense of the possible.

I choose to open my heart and mind to new ideas, new sensations, and new influences.

Without despising what is familiar and conventional, I choose to seek out the treasures and pleasures of novelty.

I choose to recognize that being realistic is not the same as refusing to exit my comfort zones. By challenging myself to dream bigger dreams, I am taking a realistic approach to living a creative life.

As I embrace the unknown, I not only discover hidden forms of beauty, but I make the forms of beauty that were already known useful to me in new ways.

The Road Best Traveled

Today I choose the way of gratitude.

I choose to recognize that there is an element, however small or seemingly insignificant, in every situation that is capable of being the source of genuine unforced appreciation.

I choose to recognize that a decision to be grateful is not the same as a decision to be complacent.

I choose to recognize that I can sincerely praise what is working in my life without becoming someone who settles for less than their worth.

I choose to recognize that my aspiration to create new and improved realities is fueled by the inspiration I feel when I consciously direct attention to what is lovable in my life.

I choose to recognize that I am more compelled to change the world when I exercise my ability to discern its non-obvious forms of beauty.

As my vision of well-being expands, so does my motivation to bring more of it forth.

My Brief Guide to Dealing with Vaguebookers

vaguebook

“For those who may not know what vaguebooking is, it’s the act of posting a status update about a specific thing or person but providing absolutely no details as to who they are or what the thing might be.” – Joseph Hindy, 5 Reasons Vaguebooking Is Destroying Your Relationships

If you’re wondering “Are they talking about me?” then you may have already wasted your time.

If the person you’re wondering about was interested in a specific answer or specific response, they would have asked a specific question or made a specific criticism. Are there exceptions? Of course. Sometimes people vaguebook because they need help and don’t know how to ask for it in a straightforward or direct manner. Some people vaguebook to be humorous while others do it as a way of speaking in code to their friends. If you’re dealing with a person who appears to be making a sincere cry for help, then help them out to the best of your ability. If the status update is just a joke, feel free to laugh your heart out. If the vaguebooker is speaking in code to their friends, have fun deciphering the hidden meanings. Otherwise, instead of asking yourself “Are they talking about me?” you might want to consider a different question: “Are there better uses for my time than analyzing vague passive-aggressive statements on social media?”

If you’re a person with specific goals, then the last thing you can afford to do is squander your life away analyzing the words of someone who isn’t interested in taking the specific risk of specifying the subject/object of their disdain or disgust.

Just as others have the right to vaguebook about whatever they want, you have the right to protect your energy, value your time, and manage your attention like any other person who chooses to live deliberately and purposefully.

Keeping the Others in Mind

Nothing makes a better employee than the ability to think like an employer. Even if you don’t want to own a business, it’s important to know how business owners think.

Nothing makes a better employer than the ability to think like an employee. Even if you don’t want to work for someone else, it’s important to know what it’s like to do the things you’ll be asking others to do.

If you have an audience that you want to influence, inspire, or impress, the best thing you can do is spend some time walking in that audience’s shoes. You can’t be great at what you do if you limit what you do to focusing only on what you do.