Respect the old when you are young. Help the weak when you are strong. Confess your faults when you are wrong. Because one day, you will be old, weak and wrong.
I remember encountering some of the “old guard” when I was a young turk, running around Hollywood with my bright, shiny new Illusion Factory. The impressions we cast were far and wide. We were the new era, new thought, new approach, new technology, new methodologies. I envisioned us as a sparkling new pathway into marketing entertainment, and manifest that into reality in as many ways as we might.
During this time, some of the parties whom I was disrupting were none too pleased about my presence and made those feelings known to our mutual clients. I represented a disruption of the way things had always been done and it made them uncomfortable and annoyed.
Flash forward 43 years and now the younger clients have a misconception that we are the old guard, representing things the way they have always been. It does not matter that I am showing them cutting edge new technologies, methodologies and marketing approaches that represent the next wave of marketing innovations. Some just instantly discount me due to my age. They do not take the time to hear what I am saying, they are already tuning out. Presuming that someone of my age could not be bringing them something new and valuable.
I smile in those moments, knowing we are still very much on the cutting edge and that their naïveté is giving them cause to dismiss something that they should pay attention to. But such is life.
In my strongest and weakest moments, I have always tried to be a pillar of support for those around me who are struggling. I have had numerous struggles from which to emerge and each has only made me stronger and more viable for having bettered the situation. Others I know are having a harder go of it. They do not read the books I read, or listen to the sages that I immerse myself in. So I started writing these musings every day. If for no other reason than perhaps one day, the one I write will help you, (whomever you are) who is reading this particular one, today.
I am not a sage, and have zero aspirations as such. I am insatiably curious, perpetually watching others in an attempt to grow myself in ways that need maturation. When I find a morsel of value, I share it. Then I expound upon it. Just to help ensure the value that I find in the meme to be of deeper value to the person receiving it.
Recognizing when you are wrong is an art form. Learning how to own it politely and accept that you only get stronger by being able to admit your faults is a cultivated skill that many never seem to learn. Being wrong is genuinely no big deal. Owning it as soon as you recognize it to be true and acting on that knowledge as soon as is possible, is the true feat. Everyone is wrong at one time or another. I have been wrong more times than I could possibly count. It doesn’t matter. Seeing it, admitting it, and correcting it are the opportunities for growth that come with this experience.
We will all become weak and frail. It is an eventuality. The secret is to spend the time in advance becoming so strong on so many levels, that as we decline, we have solace in knowing we gave life everything we had when we had the chance.