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  • Writer's pictureW. Austin Gardner

Good days and bad

Sooner or later, a man, if he is wise, discovers that life is a mixture of good days and bad, victory and defeat, give and take. He learns that it doesn’t pay to be a too-sensitive soul, that he should let some things go over his head like water off a duck’s back. He learns that he who loses his temper usually loses out, that all men have burnt toast for breakfast now and then, and that he shouldn’t take the other fellow’s grouch too seriously.

He learns that carrying a chip on his shoulder is the easiest way to get into trouble, that the quickest way to become unpopular is to carry tales of gossip about others, that buck-passing always turns out to be a boomerang, that it doesn’t matter so much who gets the credit so long as the job gets done.

He learns that most others are as ambitious as he is, that they have brains as good or better, that hard work, not cleverness, is the secret of success. He learns that no man ever gets to first base alone, and that it is only through cooperative effort that we move on to better things.

He realizes (in short) that the “art of getting along” depends about 98 percent on his own behavior toward others

“Kindness is a language the dumb can speak and the deaf can hear and understand.”

John C. Maxwell, Winning with People: Discover the People Principles That Work for You Every Time (Nashville, TN: HarperCollins Leadership, 2007).

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