The McQueen Manifesto
As often happens in life, situations arise and crisis hits without warning, but whether in good times or bad, it is best to have some Life ‘Rules’, or guidelines, to have in place. Navigating the experience of life without a ‘compass’ is a recipe for disaster. Having a game plan will help your journey be smoother. Throughout my life, I have experienced many situations, both good and bad, as I’m sure you have as well, and the following ‘rules’ have become rock solid truths that have helped me immensely. I believe they will help you as well.
13. Trust Your Gut
That feeling you get in the pit of your stomach is there for a reason. Instinct is a part of our biology in order to save us from bad situations and to help us make right decisions. Every time I ignored my gut, I lived to regret it. Whether it was dealing with a girl and my red flag gut alert would sound off and I chose to rationalize it away, or doing business, or anything at all, whenever I chose to silence it and proceed anyway never turned out good. Learn to trust your instinct and follow it.
12. Always Sit With Your Back To The Wall
Whenever I select a table in a restaurant or am sitting in a public place, I choose a seat that gives me the best vantage point of the entrance. Why is this? Two reasons:
1. My date now has to face me and has little to no distractions for me to deal with. If my back is to the wall and she is facing me, her view is of me and a wall. I just reduced the distractions and increased my interesting levels to her. Subtle but effective.
2. A smart man is aware of his surroundings at all times. Whether when pulling up to a stoplight, or sitting in a restaurant, knowing who is coming and going best prepares you for both good and bad situations. If a gun-toting maniac runs into the restaurant, guess who is going to be best prepared to deal with it? The guy sitting by the entrance with his back to the door, or the guy in the corner booth who can duck out of sight or bounce out the rear exit?
From a figurative standpoint, always know the angles when going into business dealings or social situations. It’s impossible to always see everything, but knowing who and what you’re dealing with can make the difference. Who does this guy know that I know? How does this benefit my company to work with this other company? How does it benefit them? Who is really getting the upper hand here? Analyze, draw up a game plan and proceed with confidence.
Dealing with stress is a part of life. Learn to deal with it. Stress can literally kill you if you allow it to, so getting a handle on it now will not only increase your life span, but elevate your quality of life. Worrywait is a term that I utilize to combat stress. The simple breakdown is not to worry about something until you have actual reason to.
For example, let’s say John Doe has a stable job that he is good at. Regardless that his job is secure, he chooses to worry about losing it daily. He already takes wise steps of saving a large part of his income, lives within his means and has managed to pay off his debt. In fact, he even has almost an entire year’s worth of salary in savings in case he should lose his job. So why does John Doe choose to worry everyday about a factor that may never happen? Chalk it up to personality type, anxiety issues, or perhaps him making the CHOICE to worry. Learn to worrywait: don’t worry until you have REASON to worry.
The irony of life is that generally what you worry about doesn’t happen, it winds up being something you haven’t even thought about that becomes an issue. Worrying will paralyze your productivity, be a detriment to your health and is an unmanly trait to posses. Be smart, look ahead in life and plan, but choose not to be a worry wart.
10. Always Have Your Legal Plan In Place
Many people will wait until disaster has struck and THEN make a plan. I can guarantee you that at some point in your life, something will happen, whether brought on by your actions or being at the wrong place at the wrong time. It is inevitable. With this knowledge, it is prudent and wise to have your Emergency Team set up. This means that you have a lawyer that you can call on a moment’s notice, a list of connections, or essentially a list of powerful people who you know through developing personal relationships with, who can make a call for you, as well as your Bail Buddy (a trusted friend or relative who is responsible for bailing you out). Your Bail Buddy will either have access to funds that you placed with them, or has the means themselves to bail you out and an agreement for you to re-pay them. Having a powerful friend, whether that is a Senator or the judge in your small town will move mountains when and if push comes to shove. Never underestimate the importance of these friends. You may need to call in a favor one day. Be prepared.
9. Believe What People Do, Not What They Say
Women lie. Men lie. People lie. Whether to protect you from the truth or to protect themselves, mankind will generally err on the side of falsehoods in order to make sure everything runs smoothly. Learn to believe people’s actions and not what they say. This doesn’t mean you go around never believing a word out of people’s mouths, but for matters of importance, including but not exclusionary, in business and relationships, it best to assume that there are multiple angles to examine. To put it simply, if someone may have a higher motivation to lie and they are not following a moral code, then odds are they are lying. On the flip side. actions will tell you much more about a person than hours of talking. Examine people’s intent, and watch closely to see if their actions match their words.
8. No One Cares More About You Than Yourself
This is not a cynical statement, this is a fact. At the end of the day, everyone must fend for themselves and be responsible for their actions and progress in life. Your parents may love you and your best friend may have your back, however, what you do in your life and what you accomplish is up to you and you alone. First off, unless a person in your life is a natural life cheerleader, then no one is going to DAILY motivate you to become great. That is up to you entirely. You can surround yourself with positive upbeat people and that will help you, but regardless, people are busy with their own lives, problems, dreams and goals. Be a man, take responsibility for your actions and know there is one person that you can ALWAYS depend on and that’s YOU.
7. Learn To Set Goals
Show me a successful person and I will show you a person who knows the value in making goals. If you do not know where you want to go, then how would you get there? Learn to start making small goals and larger goals, you will notice a difference and your confidence and sense of self-worth will sky-rocket when you start achieving them. Goals have always been an integral part of my life and are definitely responsible for any success I may have had. Make a goal, plan and execute.
6. Pick Your Battles Wisely
You know what the mark of a real man is? Knowing when to walk away or admit that you were wrong. No matter how tough you think you are, no matter how many push ups you can do, no matter how much money you have in the bank, there is always someone smarter, stronger and richer than you out there. Knowing this, it’s best to admit when you’re in over your head and to retreat. I mean this in the literal and figurative sense.
There have been a time or two when I realized if I didn’t back down, I was going to physically get the beat down of my life, if not killed. In those particular situations, I realized that ‘playing possum’ was smarter than mouthing off and I lived to tell about it. In business, I have had opportunities where I could have lost everything if I had gone through with them, so I decided to turn them down or to eject myself from the dealings with minimum financial damage. In the name of self-preservation it is okay to back down, apologize and walk away. It may just save your life.
5. Good Things Come To Those Who Bust Their Ass
The tired expression of ‘Good things come to those who wait’, had to have been written by a fool, because people continually believe that good things will happen to them based on them going through the motions of life and idly waiting on their golden rainbow. This is false. Everything that most people attain is because they bust their ass to achieve it and I know from personal experience that nothing good every comes from waiting. Get out there and make things happen. Waiting will only cause you to be stagnant and stagnation if a recipe for death.
4. You Really Are The Average Of Five Of Your Friends
When your mother told you ‘birds of a feather flock together’, she was right. Look around, what do you see? What do your friends do, how do they make money? Do they have goals? Do they workout? Are they hell-bent on getting ahead in life, or are they content with becoming attached to their couch and living vicariously through their sports heroes? How do you compare to them? Be honest with yourself and make adjustments if needed. This doesn’t mean that you have to cut them off entirely, but you can limit your exposure to them and choose to find friends who are on track to do great things in life.
3. Risk Falling On Your Face
Learn to take risks in life. Without risk comes little reward. Show me a person who never takes risks and I will show you a boring individual who has had little pleasurable experiences in life. With the sweet comes the sour and with risk comes the Life Trips, falling down and possibly looking like an idiot. However, that’s what life is about, is taking calculated risks. Don’t take stupid risks for the sake of taking risks, instead make calculated risks assessments and proceed from there. Life without risks is uneventful. Learn to live a little.
2. Focus On Achieving Greatness, Not Mediocrity
Define what you becoming great is. Is it you living in paradise with a suffice monthly income and no job? Is it you becoming a famous musician? Define it and pursue it. Don’t live a life where you look back with regret because you didn’t really pursue the life you wanted. You only get one life, make the most of it, dream big, work hard and achieve greatness.
1. Love Yourself
No one will love you like you. Learn to forgive yourself, appreciate yourself and value what you have to offer the world. In order for others to respect you, you need to respect yourself. Understand that every one of you reading this has value, talents and greatness and that by loving yourself, you will greater enhance these qualities.
This has been an excerpt from my upcoming book, The Alpha Playboy: Every Man’s Guide To Game/Style/Fitness/Lifestyle.
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