Just before Christmas, an honest politician, a generous lawyer and Santa Claus were riding in the elevator of a very posh hotel. Just before the doors opened they all noticed a $20 bill lying on the floor.
Which one picked it up?
Santa of course, because the other two don't exist!
1. I will be happy once I have _____ (or once I earn X).
Problem: If you think you can’t be happy until you reach a certain point, or until you reach a certain income, or have a certain type of house or car or computer setup, you’ll never be happy. That elusive goal is always just out of reach. Once we reach those goals, we are not satisfied — we want more.
Solution: Learn to be happy with what you have, where you are, and who you are, right at this moment. Happiness doesn’t have to be some state that we want to get to eventually — it can be found right now. Learn to count your blessings, and see the positive in your situation. This might sound simplistic, but it works.
2. I wish I were as ____ as (a celebrity, friend, co-worker).
Problem: We’ll never be as pretty, as talented, as rich, as sculpted, as cool, as everyone else. There will always be someone better, if you look hard enough. Therefore, if we compare ourselves to others like this, we will always pale, and will always fail, and will always feel bad about ourselves. This is no way to be happy.
Solution: Stop comparing yourself to others, and look instead at yourself — what are your strengths, your accomplishments, your successes, however small? What do you love about yourself? Learn to love who you are, right now, not who you want to become. There is good in each of us, love in each of us, and a wonderful human spirit in every one of us.
3. Seeing others becoming successful makes me jealous and resentful.
Problem: First, this assumes that only a small number of people can be successful. In truth, many, many people can be successful — in different ways.
Solution: Learn to admire the success of others, and learn from it, and be happy for them, by empathizing with them and understanding what it must be like to be them. And then turn away from them, and look at yourself — you can be successful too, in whatever you choose to do. And even more, you already are successful. Look not at those above you in the social ladder, but those below you — there are always millions of people worse off than you, people who couldn’t even read this article or afford a computer. In that light, you are a huge success.
4. I am a miserable failure — I can’t seem to do anything right.
Problem: Everyone is a failure, if you look at it in certain ways. Everyone has failed, many times, at different things. I have certainly failed so many times I cannot count them — and I continue to fail, daily. However, looking at your failures as failures only makes you feel bad about yourself. By thinking in this way, we will have a negative self-image and never move on from here.
Solution: See your successes and ignore your failures. Look back on your life, in the last month, or year, or 5 years. And try to remember your successes. If you have trouble with this, start documenting them — keep a success journal, either in a notebook or online. Document your success each day, or each week. When you look back at what you’ve accomplished, over a year, you will be amazed. It’s an incredibly positive feeling.
5. I’m going to beat so-and-so no matter what — I’m better than him. And there’s no way I’ll help him succeed — he might beat me.
Problem: Competitiveness assumes that there is a small amount of gold to be had, and I need to get it before he does. It makes us into greedy, back-stabbing, hurtful people. We try to claw our way over people to get to success, because of our competitive feelings. For example, if a blogger wants to have more subscribers than another blogger, he may never link to or mention that other blogger. However, who is to say that my subscribers can’t also be yours? People can read and subscribe to more than one blog.
Solution: Learn to see success as something that can be shared, and learn that if we help each other out, we can each have a better chance to be successful. Two people working towards a common goal are better than two people trying to beat each other up to get to that goal. There is more than enough success to go around. Learn to think in terms of abundance rather than scarcity.
6. Dammit! Why do these bad things always happen to me?
Problem: Bad things happen to everybody. If we dwell on them, they will frustrate us and bring us down.
Solution: See bad things as a part of the ebb and flow of life. Suffering is a part of the human condition — but it passes. All pain goes away, eventually. Meanwhile, don’t let it hold you back. Don’t dwell on bad things, but look forward towards something good in your future. And learn to take the bad things in stride, and learn from them. Bad things are actually opportunities to grow and learn and get stronger, in disguise.
7. You can’t do anything right! Why can’t you be like ____ ?
Problem: This can be said to your child or your subordinate or your sibling. The problem? Comparing two people, first of all, is always a fallacy. People are different, with different ways of doing things, different strengths and weaknesses, different human characteristics. If we were all the same, we’d be robots. Second, saying negative things like this to another person never helps the situation. It might make you feel better, and more powerful, but in truth, it hurts your relationship, it will actually make you feel negative, and it will certainly make the other person feel negative and more likely to continue negative behavior. Everyone loses.
Solution: Take the mistakes or bad behavior of others as an opportunity to teach. Show them how to do something. Second, praise them for their positive behavior, and encourage their success. Last, and most important, love them for who they are, and celebrate their differences.
8. Your work sucks. It’s super lame. You are a moron and I hope you never reproduce.
Problem: I’ve actually gotten this comment before. It feels wonderful. However, let’s look at it not from the perspective of the person receiving this kind of comment but from the perspective of the person giving it. How does saying something negative like this help you? I guess it might feel good to vent if you feel like your time has been wasted. But really, how much of your time has been wasted? A few minutes? And whose fault is that? The bloggers or yours? In truth, making negative comments just keeps you in a negative mindset. It’s also not a good way to make friends.
Solution: Learn to offer constructive solutions, first of all. Instead of telling someone their blog sucks, or that a post is lame, offer some specific suggestions for improvement. Help them get better. If you are going to take the time to make a comment, make it worth your time. Second, learn to interact with people in a more positive way — it makes others feel good and it makes you feel better about yourself. And you can make some great friends this way. That’s a good thing.
9. Insulting People Back
Problem: If someone insults you or angers you in some way, insulting them back and continuing your anger only transfers their problem to you. This person was probably having a bad day (or a bad year) and took it out on you for some reason. If you reciprocate, you are now having a bad day too. His problem has become yours. Not only that, but the cycle of insults can get worse and worse until it results in violence or other negative consequences — for both of you.
Solution: Let the insults or negative comments of others slide off you like Teflon. Don’t let their problem become yours. In fact, try to understand their problem more — why would someone say something like that? What problems are they going through? Having a little empathy for someone not only makes you understand that their comment is not about you, but it can make you feel and act in a positive manner towards them — and make you feel better about yourself in the process.
10. I don’t think I can do this — I don’t have enough discipline. Maybe some other time.
Problem: If you don’t think you can do something, you probably won’t. Especially for the big stuff. Discipline has nothing to do with it — motivation and focus has everything to do with it. And if you put stuff off for “some other time”, you’ll never get it done. Negative thinking like this inhibits us from accomplishing anything.
Solution: Turn your thinking around: you can do this! You don’t need discipline. Find ways to make yourself a success at your goal. If you fail, learn from your mistakes, and try again. Instead of putting a goal off for later, start now. And focus on one goal at a time, putting all of your energy into it, and getting as much help from others as you can. You can really move mountains if you start with positive thinking.
A teenage girl had been talking on the phone for about half an hour, and then she hung up.
"Wow!," said her father, "That was short. You usually talk for two hours. What happened?"
"Wrong number," replied the girl.
A hardworking female executive dies and meets St. Peter at the pearly gates and he says, "You've shown an outstanding aptitude for making business decisions. Choose whether you will go to heaven or to hell."
"I don't know!" she flounders.
"Tell you what," St. Peter says, "You can have 24 hours in heaven and 24 hours in hell. Then you have to decide where to spend eternity."
"Okay then," she says. "I'll start with heaven since I'm here already."
She goes in the pearly gates and makes some acquaintances. They have a nice walk among beautiful gardens. They have a nice quiet lunch. They have a nice stroll along a pristine, white, sandy beach looking out on brilliant blue ocean. At the end of the day she is shown to a nice room, and has a quiet meal on the balcony, looking out over the setting sun and the ocean. She marvels at the scenic beauty of heaven.
The next morning, St. Peter takes her to the fiery gates of hell and hands her off to Satan.
Satan takes her to a power breakfast given in her honor. Then she is escorted to a tennis club where she is greeted by her old boss, some co-workers, and previous business acquaintances. She plays a few sets of tennis and catches up on the gossip. At lunchtime her old boss takes her to a gourmet restaurant and she has an excellent meal with vintage wine.
After lunch he takes her to an exclusive golf course and they play 18 holes of golf. She runs into other business acquaintances and catches up on news and gossip.
After golf, he drops her at a spa where she is pampered and spoiled by beauty and body treatments. When she is finished at the spa, an acquaintance takes her shopping at designer stores. She picks out a fabulous evening gown, and Satan himself takes her to a huge party with drinking, dancing, gourmet food, and famous people.
At the end of the evening, a stretch limo drops her off at a five-star hotel. As she soaks in the Jacuzzi tub, and sips the complimentary champagne, she ponders eternity.
The next morning, she meets St. Peter at the pearly gates.
"Well, have you made your decision?" He asks.
"I've decided on hell," she announces.
"So be it." St Peter waves goodbye and she reappears before the fiery gates of hell.
Once inside she is teamed up with her old boss again, only this time everyone is wearing rags. They are filthy, diseased, malnourished, and living in a barren desert. They have to scrounge for food, water, clothing, even shade.
"What happened!?!" She exclaimed.
"Well," said her boss, "Yesterday you were a recruit. Today you are staff."
A taxi passenger tapped the driver on the shoulder to ask him a question.
The driver screamed, lost control of the car, nearly hit a bus, went up on the footpath, and stopped centimeters from a shop window.
For a second everything went quiet in the cab, then the driver said: “Look mate, don’t ever do that again. You scared the daylights out of me!”
The passenger apologized and said, “I didn’t realize that a little tap would scare you so much.”
A little old lady answered a knock on the door one day, only to be confronted by a well-dressed young man carrying a vacuum cleaner.
"Good morning," said the young man. "If I could take a couple minutes of your time, I would like to demonstrate the very latest in high-powered vacuum cleaners."
"Go away!" said the old lady. "I haven't got any money" and she tried to close the door. Quick as a flash, the young man wedged his foot in the door and pushed it wide open.
"Don't be too hasty!" he said. "Not until you have at least seen my demonstration." And with that, he emptied a bucket of horse shit all over her hallway carpet.
"If this vacuum cleaner does not remove all traces of this horse shit from your carpet, Madam, I will personally eat the remainder."
"Well," she said, "I hope you've got a good appetite, because the electricity was cut off this morning."
A husband and wife go to a restaurant. The waiter approaches the table to take their order.
"I'll have your biggest, juiciest steak," says the husband.
"But sir, what about the mad cow?" asks the waiter.
"Oh," says the husband, "she'll order for herself."
A computer lets you make more mistakes faster than any invention in human history – with the possible exceptions of handguns and tequila.
If it weren’t for C, we’d all be programming in BASI and OBOL.
There are 10 types of people in the world: those who understand binary, and those who don’t.
In a world without fences and walls, who needs Gates and Windows?
Programming today is a race between software engineers striving to build bigger and better idiot-proof programs, and the Universe trying to produce bigger and better idiots. So far, the Universe is winning.
Computers make very fast, very accurate mistakes.
Never underestimate the bandwidth of a station wagon full of tapes hurling down the highway.
An SQL statement walks into a bar and sees two tables. It approaches, and asks “may I join you?”
Q: Why is it that programmers always confuse Halloween with Christmas?
A: Because 31 OCT = 25 DEC.
Man is the best computer we can put aboard a spacecraft… and the only one that can be mass produced with unskilled labor
Q: How many programmers does it take to change a light bulb?
A: None. It’s a hardware problem.
Two strings walk into a bar and sit down. The bartender says, “So what’ll it be?”
The first string says, “I think I’ll have a beer quag fulk boorg jdk^CjfdLk jk3s d#f67howe%^U r89nvy~~owmc63^Dz x.xvcu”