Every day is a great day, for somebody.
Glenn Smith Jr.
Today has the potential to be a great day. I can say that because today is just getting started and nothing has gone wrong… yet. That is the way most people view the start of their day, with the possibility of something going wrong and ruining it. You wake up to a fresh new day just knowing that someone in D.C is going to do something to destroy your life. You don’t really know how or why that is, you just know it is true. Why? Because some newscaster or talk show host has told you so. After all, if Glenn Beck or Keith Olberman says something is so, that means it has to be true, right? Wrong!
Just because you see or hear something on a nationally broadcast show doesn’t make it true. There will always be an element of fact in any story or article but there is always an equal portion of personal bias mixed in with it. Commentators from every point of the political spectrum can share their view on the same compilation of data and yet they give you a remarkably diverse range of opinions about what is the truth. If all you ever do is feed your mind with this flow of opinionated information, you will find yourself having far more bad days than great days.
Greatness is not a tangible thing, but more a reflection of how someone deals with the things that life throws at them. If you look at the last several presidents, for instance, you will see a common trait among them. From Ronald Reagan to Barak Obama, each of these men possess(ed) the ability to rise above the chatter of the media and general public and remain focused on the purpose they set out to accomplish. Yesterday (June 21, 2010), President Obama had a great day. He was able to sign into law a major finance reform bill that was part of his overall agenda. Whether this was a good thing for the country or not didn’t matter, he had accomplished something that he set out to do. Mr. Obama had another victory under his belt and thus it was a great day. George W. Bush had many similarly great days during his presidency, as did Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton. What separates these men from the rest of us is not how many great days they have, but how they are able to turn the not so great days into good ones.
How you respond to adversity will define who you really are. Ronald Reagan responded to the economic crisis in the 80’s by challenging all of us to believe in a greater America and to push forward with individual self determination to build our own great society. Bill Clinton chose a more progressive path but when faced with a dramatic change in Congress (1994 Republican Mid-term Victory), he shifted to a more moderate stance and chose to find consensus with his rivals to get things done. This led us to a great period of prosperity and growth. George W. Bush had to handle the worst attack on American soil by an enemy since Pearl Harbor while being daily scourged by the Liberal Mainstream Media. Yet he was able to prosecute a response to the attack that led to two new democratically elected governments. All of these men have legacies of victory and defeat. They all are both revered and despised. But ALL of them must still be considered great men. Their greatness must be measured by their ability to turn adversity into production. Mr. Obama came into office with a solid agenda. Some people like this, many do not. Like his predecessor, he is being assailed from one side and praised from the other. It remains to be seen if what he is doing will be good or bad for the future of our nation (I am choosing to remain neutral for this article). The point still remains that he HAS accomplished much of his agenda in a short period of time. He has faced some adversity and much resistance, yet he has prevailed… so far. In November, Mr. Obama may very well find himself in the same position Bill Clinton did in 1994. There is a strong likelihood of him having to deal directly with his primary opposition. It will be here that we will see if Mr. Obama can stand up to the test of greatness. So far he has had a fairly easy road, soon this may change.
There are many lessons to be learned from all of this. The main one is this: to achieve greatness, you must be able to handle adversity. The only way to have a steady flow of “great days” is to not allow the adversity to direct you, but instead you must direct it. Right now the climate for private businesses is very difficult at best. Much of Mr. Obama’s agenda has created a somewhat adverse landscape for the private sector to grow. Still, it is not impossible to succeed. If you have a solid plan and are diligent to make yourself aware of the obstacles in front of you, you can make it work. This will only be possible if you feed your mind with positive and relevant information. You cannot simply tune into Hannity or Matthews and expect to get the solution to your problems. The fact is, you will most likely fall into the trap of believing that all is wrong and most likely will do nothing to better yourself. One of the defining qualities of the American spirit is its ability to rise above the discussion and push forward in spite of the naysayers.
If you are unemployed and can’t seem to “find” a job, create one. Put your talents and creativity to work and find a product or service that meets a need. People will always flock to great ideas and great people. Nothing will ever be accomplished by sitting around and just complaining about the latest politician or official. For America to begin having a steady string of “great days” again, its people must rise up and take the bull by the horns. We must go back to what made us great in the first place, hard work applied to innovation thus creating a whole new economy. Do we face obstacles and adversity? Absolutely! So did our forefathers when they declared independence and our grandfathers when they fought for our freedom. Nothing great ever happens when you sit around and wait for it. Greatness is created by direct action.
Yesterday, Mr. Obama had a great day; the day before he didn’t. Still, he is pressing forward with his agenda. Whether you like him and his policies or not, he is still showing that success is possible. Now the question is: what will be your response. Will you sit by and say “there is nothing I can do about it so I guess we are all screwed” or will you say ”I don’t care what happens, I will create my own destiny, period”? I say we should do the latter. We should rise up and be counted with those who found success before us. We can restore the greatness of America again by regaining our own individual greatness. It is still possible to win. It is still possible to succeed. You just have to get off your seat and do it.
Yesterday I had a great day. Today I will have a great day. For me, Everyday has the potential to be a great day.
HAVE A GREAT DAY, TOO.