Shine Bright Like a Diamond

Yet another harbinger or sign of a “Red Tsunami” looming over the American political landscape – in addition to the ones highlighted in previous blog posts – is the issue of election denial and the questioning of the credibility and legitimacy of elections in the United States, which is a wholly novel phenomenon in American culture. This practice of election denial began in 2016 with the Democrats when Donald Trump won the election that year, and since then, the practice of election denial keeps getting worse. In turn, there is no sign that election denial in the United States will abate once 2024 comes around, but then again, anything can happen.

As mentioned before, what goes on in politics and the social scene affects the business climate and the economy as a whole, and the struggle for business leaders and entrepreneurs is to overcome the stressors placed on the business climate and the economy as a result of political and social factors. Knowledge and information are key inputs to the decision-making process aimed towards overcoming these political and social stressors on the business climate and economy. In fact, it has been said that: “Many situations are characterized by a decision maker who would like to know information to which a potential adviser with incongruent preferences is privy.”

It has been said that on average, the world’s elite business leaders and entrepreneurs read around sixty to one-hundred books every year. Nevertheless, when all is said and done, one’s knowledge is merely relative to the entirety of knowledge that exists. It follows that one’s knowledge can never be absolute. However, given the fact that globalization and technology are the two main drivers for changing and transforming virtually everything on both a microlevel and a macrolevel, the expansion of one’s knowledge is a must in order to adjust to both the microlevel and macrolevel situations fostered by globalization and technology, even if one’s knowledge is merely relative to the entirety of knowledge rather than absolute.

In turn, the decision to adjust to systemic changes and forces such as globalization and technology and to render favorable and optimal outcomes for oneself amidst these systemic changes and forces is centered around three things, namely, the course of action available for a person, the potential outcomes of one’s course of action, and the preference one has in regards to potential outcomes. But in any case, and as was suggested by the late game theorist Thomas Schelling, one will always encounter situations whereby people will be “having preferences, pursuing goals, minimizing effort or embarrassment or maximizing view of comfort, seeking company or avoiding it, and otherwise behaving in a way that we might call ‘purposive.’”

Schelling added:

“Furthermore, the goals or purposes or objectives relate directly to other people and their behavior, or are constrained by an environment that consists of other people who are pursuing their goals or their purposes or their objectives. What we typically have is a mode of contingent behavior – behavior that depends on what others are doing.”

Ray Dalio gave good advice in regards to how a purposive individual can overcome an environment defined by the constraints and obstacles placed by others in order to achieve one’s goal or purpose or objective:

“To help you stay centered and effective, pretend that your life is a martial art or a game, the object of which is to get around a challenge and reach a goal. Once you accept its rules, you’ll get used to the discomfort that comes with the constant frustration. You will never handle everything perfectly: Mistakes are inevitable and it’s important to recognize and accept this fact of life.”

Dalio added:

“The good news is that every mistake you make can teach you something, so there’s no end to learning. You’ll soon realize that excuses like ‘that’s not easy’ or ‘it doesn’t seem fair’ or even ‘I can’t do that’ are of no value and that it pays to push through.”

Nor are expertise and perfection the sure prerequisites for success. Essentially, what is key to success and thus the accomplishment of one’s goal, purpose, and objective is acquisitiveness, effort, practice, and the wisdom to apply valuable lessons derived from past mistakes. As Dalio wrote:

“So what if you don’t have all the skills you need to succeed? Don’t worry about it because that’s true for everyone. You just have to know when they are needed and where you can go to get them. With practice, you will eventually play this game with a calm unstoppable centeredness in the face of adversity. Your ability to get what you want will thrill you.”

After all, nothing good in life comes easy. As one former American president once said: “The finest steel must first go through the hottest fire.” And as the expression goes, diamonds are made through pressure. Without the pressure needed for diamond transformation, one is left with merely coal and dirt.

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