We don’t score a touchdown every time but we move the ball forward John F Kennedy didn’t look up at the moon and say oh that’s too far none of us can afford to be complacent stuff gets better if we work at it it wasn’t because of my brilliance or something that these things happen it spent time thinking about poles but not about principle.
Nobody cares how tough your upbringing was, you can’t take yourself too seriously, you have to take the job seriously we get real exercise for about two weeks and then we fall asleep for two years.
Winston Churchill was dismissed as little more than a has-been who enjoyed scotch a little bit too much.
He’s the 44th president and the United States he was inaugurated as president on January 20th 2009 he struck Obama and here are his top ten rules for success.
Move the ball forward
We have looked at a whole slew of problems when we came into office and we’ve said where can we advance the ball down the field each and every time in across the board and we don’t score a touchdown every time but we move the ball forward .
Question: “Do you feel like you hit the metrics that you wanted to hit.
Answer: “You’re always going to fall short because if you if you’re if you’re hitting your marks that means you didn’t set them high enough.
That’s what hope is imagining and then fighting for and then working for what did not seem possible before that’s leadership John F Kennedy didn’t look up at the moon and say oh that’s too far we can go false hopes Martin Luther King and stand on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial and say go home everybody the dreams deferred false hopes you all need a reality check there is a moment in the life of every generation when that spirit of hopefulness has to come through if we are to make our mark on history.
Don’t Get Complacent
We too often let the external the material thing serve as indicators that we’re doing well even though something inside us tells us that we’re not doing our best that we’re avoiding that which is hard but also necessary that that we’re shrinking from rather than rising to the challenges of the age and the thing is in this new hyper competitive age none of us none of us can afford to be complacent that’s true whatever profession you choose professors might earn the distinction of tenure but that doesn’t guarantee that they’ll keep putting in the long hours and late nights and have the passion and the drive to be great educators the same principle is true in your personal life being a parent is not just a matter of paying the bills doing the bare minimum it’s not just bringing a child in the world that matters but the acts of love and sacrifice it takes to raise and educate that child and give them opportunity.
The one thing that I feel deeply about and this is something like I’ll feel deeply about what I leave Leave leave government is stuff gets better if we work at it and we stay focused on where we’re going it doesn’t immediately get all solved and I warned against this when I was running for office because everybody had the hope posters.
VA is better now than when I came into office it is better now than when I came into office government works better than when I came into office the economy by every metric is better than when I came into office and so the reason I can sleep at night is I say to myself you know what, it’s better now am I satisfied with it no and should voters be satisfied with it absolutely not because otherwise you know if we get complacent lazy then stuff doesn’t happen.
You Can Not Make It On Your Own
You just don’t succeed in any endeavor unless you’ve got a team that’s been supporting you and that’s part of my political philosophy it’s really based on my own experience which was if somebody hadn’t been out there looking out for me starting with my mom my grandmother my grandfather then I would have made it it wasn’t because of my brilliance or something that these things happen it had to do with people investing in you and so we’ve got to make sure we’re investing in the next generation just like somebody invested in us.
Commit To Something Bigger
I want to highlight two main problems with that old tired me first approach to life first of all it distracts you from what’s truly important and it may lead you to compromise your values and your principles and your commitments think about it it’s in chasing titles and status in worrying about the next election rather than the national interest and the interests of those who you’re supposed to represent that politicians so often lose their ways in Washington they spend time thinking about polls but not about principle. It was in pursuit of gaudy short-term profits and the bonuses that came with them that so many folks lost their way on Wall Street engaging in extraordinary risks with other people’s money, in contrast the leaders we revere the businesses and institutions that last they are not generally the result of a narrow pursuit of popularity or personal advancement but of devotion to some bigger purpose the preservation of the Union or the determination to lift a country out of a depression the creation of a quality product a commitment to your customers your workers your shareholders and your community a commitment to make sure that an institution like ASU is inclusive and diverse and giving opportunity to all that’s the hallmark of real success.
Stop Making Excuses
We know that too many young men in our community continue to make bad choices and I have to say growing up I made quite a few myself sometimes I wrote off my own failings as just another example of the world trying to keep a black man down I had a tendency sometimes to make excuses for me not doing the right thing but one of the things that all of you have learned over the last four years is there’s no longer any room for excuses I understand there’s a common fraternity Creed here at Morehouse excuses are tools of the incompetent used to build bridges to nowhere and monuments of nothingness. Well we’ve got no time for excuses, not because the bitter legacy of slavery and segregation have banished entirely they have not, not because racism and discrimination no longer exists, we know those are still out there it’s just that in today’s hyper-connected hyper-competitive world with millions of young people from China and India and Brazil many of whom started with a whole lot less than all of you did all of them entering the global workforce alongside you nobody is going to give you anything that you have not earned.
Nobody cares how tough your upbringing was nobody cares if you suffered some discrimination and moreover you have to remember that whatever you’ve gone through it pales in comparison to the hardships previous generations endured and they overcame them and if they overcame them you can overcome them too.
Don’t Take Yourself Too Seriously
Part of the way you survive the stress of the White House is being able to laugh with your team about some of the crazy stuff that happens and you know you can’t take yourself too seriously you have to take the job seriously you have to take your responsibilities seriously but you have to be able to laugh at yourself first and foremost in order to be able to manage the whole thing.
Stick Too Your Plan
You have to have a plan you have to have a strategy and then you have to have stick-to-itiveness because you know that the strategy is not going to immediately bear fruit the American character is one that lurches between spasm and trance we get real exercise for about two weeks and then we fall asleep for two years and what Charles Hamilton Houston understood is is that our vision extends decades extends generations and those young men I talked about we may not be able to reach them right now but I tell you what if we set the trend lines just a little bit better than the infant that’s crying in Compton or Harlem or Anacostia or the Ninth Ward, that infant may have a different future and then when that infant has a different future the country has a different future and then we as a people have a different future so there’s got to be an understanding of how time can actually help us move mountains if we’re working with time. We’re not waiting for time, we’re working with time.
Follow Your Passion
You may have setbacks and you may have failures but you’re not done you’re not even getting started not by a long shot and if you ever forget that just look to history. Thomas Paine was a failed corset maker a failed teacher and a failed tax collector before he made his mark on history with a low book called common sense that helped ignite a revolution Julia Child didn’t publish her first cookbook until she was almost 50 Colonel Sanders didn’t open up his first Kentucky Fried Chicken till he was in the 60s Winston Churchill was dismissed as little more than a has-been who enjoyed scotch a little bit too much before he took over as prime minister and saw Great Britain through its finest hour no one thought a former football player stocking shelves at the local supermarket would return to the game he loved become a Super Bowl MVP and then come here to Arizona and leave your Cardinals to their first Super Bowl your body of work is never done each of them at one point in their life didn’t have any title or much status to speak of but they had passion a commitment to following that passion wherever would lead and to working hard every step along the way