Life Isn’t Fair
(One of the 83 quick and practical life & work lessons from Sh*t Sandwich: Quick & Practical Success Lessons for Practically Anyone.)
Shit Sandwich Lessons for 1st Graders
Public schools have abdicated any responsibility in what I believe should be their primary function: Molding children into adults who can function well in a civilized society and not kill any of the rest of us.
Given this, if you are a parent, you have two choices: you can become a professional victim and leave everything up to the schools (in which case your children will surely achieve much less than your lazy rump did); or you can take charge of your child’s most important development (their emotional well being as adults) and release safe creatures onto the world.
If you’re all-in on the latter, then I recommend you instill these 6 simple lessons into your kids sometime after their 6th birthday (you’ll know the right time if you’re paying attention):
- Life isn’t fair. You can do everything right and still not get ice cream. Keep trying, keep smiling, keep working hard.
- You cannot get more than you give. But, you can sure get less than you give. Sometimes you work really hard and no one notices. Other times, you give while everyone else takes. In the long run, working hard and trying your best will always get you much more than doing nothing will; so the odds are with the really hard workers.
- In the end, your word and your reputation are all you have. Anyone can tell lies; great people rely on the truth to help them succeed.
- Democracy can stink sometimes. But as a really important guy once said, “Democracy is the worst form of government, except for all those other forms that have been tried…” The greatest thing about Democracy is you can always work to make it better.
- Capitalism can stink sometimes. Of course, Capitalism is the worst economic system… except for all the other forms that have been tried. When you think about “why can’t we all just share?” it seems like that would make the most sense. Unfortunately, there are bullies and lazy people that will gladly take what you produce and return nothing. Capitalism does the best job of rewarding those who work hard.
- The world needs ditch diggers, too. Not all of you are going to be actors or athletes or even scientists. In fact, some of you are going to have some pretty lousy jobs in life. Accept the fact that your job is to dig ditches, and dig them better and faster than anyone else before you. After all, digging ditches is but one tiny step in a lifelong journey and truly successful people never allow themselves to be defined by any job.