It wasn't that he can't drive and my life was in danger that did it; he can't, and it was, but that wasn't it. What gave me that uneasiness, I discovered later, was that I despise this person so much that the idea of being around her was making me sick. As soon as he did what he had to do, and we left her at some random ghetto bodega, the anxiety, the knot in my stomach..... they completely disappeared.
On the way home, turning to the right to see a woman that looked exactly like James Brown a thought came over me that made many of my recent struggles come clearly into focus. It had nothing to do with the God Mother of Soul. HEH!
In sports we often talk about certain teams, the ones that never win and seem to always find ways to lose even when the fete appears unthinkable, the franchises that do every thing all wrong and can never end the trend, having what they call "Losing Cultures". These teams are so defined by their losing ways that its all they seem to know how to do. It gets to the point where its all pervasive, it fills every member of the organization, from the front office to the coach and right down to the players themselves.
All one has to do is to watch them once, see the lethargy with which they approach their daily activity and its clear as day.... its as if their will has been broken, that they've lost hope of better days, they've given up. These teams expect to lose, and so they do.
When it comes to turning things around for these franchises they very first thing they do is talk about "Changing the Culture" of the organization. But when people are conditioned to lose on a daily basis its nearly impossible to turn them around and snap them out of it. Just like with social programs such as welfare, psychologically, when people get used to a thing you just can't take it away from them. So the only option left is to dump everyone on the club with that losers mentality and replace them with people who not only know how, but expect to win.
This concept of the Losing Culture isn't exclusive to sports, it infiltrates every group in life whether that be a business, a family, group of friends or anything else. When morale is low it affects everyone. When everyone morale is low its like walking into a dive bar full of old men with no teeth, rancid breath, and all of them passed out with their heads on the counter. There aren't going to be any supermodels walking through that door, no new money coming in, nothing. It just continues to stay the same until those old men die off or the bar goes under. Depressing, isn't it?
I'm always going on about support systems and how imperitive they are to success, yet when I walked into my house and looked around, when I looked back at the groups of people I had surrounded myself with, it struck me that I am currently, and have always been, a member of a losing culture. Not only had I been trained to lose, and to expect to do so every time, but so had everyone else around me.
This is where preachers of the Law Of Attraction and Success Principles the world over will tell you every time that you have to get as far away from negative people as you can, because they will infect you with their losing ways and drag you down with them. The only way to change that, to save yourself and break through to the winning side is to change the culture.
But how does one just cut off their friends? Worse yet, how do they cut off their family? Unless you're just completely cold hearted its all but impossible, isn't it? Its especially difficult when, like you, they too were raised in that same losing culture, and the losing ways were never really their fault.
There are way more people out there in the world that have been subjected to this very thing than there aren't, and the real bitch of it all is that they, more than anyone else, need positive people, positive influences, what we call WINNERS, to help them make that positive change in their lives. Except these winners want nothing to do with them, afterall, who wants their own winning culture to be infected with someone else's losing ways? Who wants to be dragged down? No one.
That right there, my friends, that space in between, is the gap we need to find a bridge to cross if we, as a society, are ever going to close the separation between the have's and the have nots. But it takes real courage from both in order to do so, a social courage that's in short supply in today's world.
One person who doesn't seem to have this problem is University of Georgia Head Football Coach Mark Richt. It had come out that he had been paying is assistants and support staff who make his job possible out of his own pocket with the school he worked for refused to do so. That's called integrity, and I now have a new, deep respect for this man, and will now root for the Georgia Bulldogs as long as he's a part of what they do there. I hope we can all learn from his example.
On a stranger note, a kid with two heads was born in Brazil recently. You have to read this article, they explain how normally cut off one of the heads very nonchalantly, but couldn't do it with this one because they're both healthy heads.
My final Christmas message to you, my hope, my wish from you all, is that these holidays you change you mind set to be more like Mark Richt. Take it upon yourself to show the people around you who may be down on their luck that they too can be a winner in life, and make sure that you help see them through to the other side. You might not just be saving one life, but changing the culture for an entire troupe of people. And what else could this time of year really be about?
And now Santa and that lovely young lady up top will be moving us towards ringing in that New Year, so I'm out of here for now.
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