Dad's dichotomy

My dad has lots of sayings.

And they’ve stuck with me throughout the years. Here are a few:

“Knowledge bears responsibility.”

“Stay ready for your breakthrough.”

“Never get too far from your center.”

But there are two that seemed to conflict with each other.

Whenever someone would betray my trust, he’d say, “Son, people let you down.”

And if I was being too stubborn to ask for help, he’d offer: “People need people.”

Come again, Pops?!

Why bother if I’m just going to be disappointed?!

Luckily, my interpretation of Dad’s wisdom has evolved as I got older.

Since people are imperfect, they’re bound to occasionally screw up. But instead of wallowing in the disappointment, acknowledge that it’s a natural part of life so you can move on.

Equally important: It’s hard to design an extraordinary life when you’re trying to do so as a lone ranger. You need the right support squad, people who can bring you joy, provide generous feedback and help you fill the gaps between where you are and where you’re going.

I call these people your “First Circle.”

And my First Circle includes:

  • Sounding boards for me to bounce ideas off of
  • Straight shooters who keep it real without bruising my ego
  • Well-connected influencers who can point me to opportunities that fit my vision
  • Mentees who trust my guidance and are grateful for my support
  • Friends who knew me when all of this was just a dream

Each member of my First Circle makes it easier for me to focus less on the people who’ve let me down and more on how the universe always sends you who you need so you can meet every moment.

Point (finally) taken, Dad. :)