“The first best-kept secret of total success is that we must feel love inside ourselves before we can give it to others.” – Denis Waitley
If you’ve had the opportunity to read THE ROAD LESS TRAVELLED, then you’ll find THE SEEDS OF GREATNESS it’s almost perfect fill-in-the-gaps companion for professional character development and deep spiritual growth.
Read syntopically, these two inspirational pamphlets have the potential to put you on the fast-track towards full self-actualization, overall effectiveness, and above-average achievement in all your areas of productive activity.
Or, if you’re like me, “More standards too high to live up to: More frustration, arrested development, and disappointment. Orwell!”
Questions about my self-esteem.
- Do you accept yourself just as you are? Would you say that you love yourself?
Obviously, no one could have gotten as far in life as I have without a considerable amount of self-love. Recalling the conditions from which I spring, I’ve had no choice but to accept myself and my circumstances or perish: Born into poverty Fall 1969 in Washington, DC; raised by a verbally-abusive working schizophrenic single mother; deeply influenced and mortified by more than one absentee alcoholic “father”; sexually molested by neighborhood faggots; harassed daily and beaten by school bullies; hurt emotionally by black women, in general; chronic migraine headaches that kept me incapacitated sometimes for whole days; nearly bludgeoned to death with a baseball bat to the forehead; survived several serious car-wrecks before age 12 (and many more before age 30); legally-blind for the first 15-years of my life and did not receive my first working pair of eyeglasses until my enlistment into the US ARMY. This litany could go on and on for another 10,000-words but I’ll end it here.
Needless to say, I never could have gotten my high-school diploma, graduated from both Army Basic Combat / Advanced Individual Training and Navy Boot-Camp / Avionics “A” School (near the top of my class), gone to two of the most prestigious and highly regarded universities in the USA, and found a way to retire at the age of 36, if didn’t truly love myself.
In acceptance of all that which has come and gone, I am mostly stoic now. Pensively, I ruminate over the horrible lessons of the past and I reason, “There really is no use in crying over spilt beer. Let me move on and buy another six-pack.”
- Would you rather be somebody else? If so, why?
Yes. I would much rather be a much more self-disciplined, committed, and harder working William Sherrick Duncan-Binns. Why? Because people would want to model my lifetime example, learn from my performance, and friend me on FACEBOOK.
- How do you handle criticism? Do you take it personally or do you seek to learn from criticism?
Depending upon the kind of mood I’m in and/or whether or not the person doing the criticizing occupies a societal position loftier than my own, or sits in an inferior social class, I can sometimes become extremely belligerent to the point of terroristic threats and hate-speech. But, usually, and especially if they’re armed, I will keep my silence and seek to learn something from what is being communicated.
- Do you feel guilty when you indulge in some selfish activity? Think of some recent examples.
I’d be a liar if I answered, “No. Not at all.”
I spend a lot of time in developing countries for cost-of-living reasons. I could never have the sort of living standard I experience in places like Quito, Ecuador in the USA. With my impoverished background, I should never feel guilty when I see hungry homeless mothers with children begging on sidewalks while I stroll past with bags full of supermarket-bought groceries, but I do.
Then I remember what Hispanic bigots always tell me to do at places like the Posada Colonial, and I feel much better and less guilty:
“Stay away from our children! Stay away from our race! If you even look at our people the wrong way or accidentally hit a kid you dead, nigger!”
It’s a constant struggle to remember these words before I forget.
“Okay, you told me to stay away from children. You win! Now I’m going back to my plush hotel room to enjoy this cheap cigar and this bottle of Ron Abuelo.” No time for shame.
- How comfortable are you when others praise or compliment you?
Compliments and praise make me feel uneasy because I’m always thinking that people who “flatter” are sycophantic and want something in return.
I know this is wrong.
Therefore, I’m trying to teach myself how smile and say, “Aw, shucks. Thank you so much.”
- Do you talk to yourself with all due respect or with ridicule?
Being the best question, writer Ayn Rand would make “mincemeat” out of it by answering with her philosophical distain for a “sense of humor” where rational introspection is required: When we talk to ourselves we need to speak with reverence for our own minds and never with derision.
Therefore, I’m dropping my “comedy routine” in respect for all things regarding serious rational thought.
“Laughter is only an emotional response to some external stimuli like an incongruent situation. It’s completely rational to laugh at existence because Reality (Truth) can be funnier than a Three Stooges episode sometimes.”