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An Understanding of Reality
Seriously, do you really want to think that your college years are the best years of your life, and the rest of life is all downhill? How does that make you feel? What a ridiculous strategy for life!
Why do people say this? Well, there are a variety of reasons that we won’t go into in this particular book. Interestingly enough, the folks who tell you this may include your parents and other adults who care deeply for you. Suffice it to say, when folks say this, they are not thinking clearly about human nature and happiness.
All you have to do is ask yourself, “Do I hope that my college years are the best years I will ever have, never to be matched again for the next seventy years I live? Or, while college might be a wonderful experience, am I actually hopeful that life will continue to get better—and happier?”
Aren’t those two questions remarkably easy to answer? Of course you don’t want college to be the best years of your entire life. Of course you hope that life will continue to get better after college. I am much happier now than I was in college. And I know many, many others who can say the same thing. So let’s figure out how you can be one of them.
But in order to do that, we will have to examine reality—the way things really are. Because often the world tells you stupid things (like college should be the best time of your life). College should be great, but don’t set that low of a bar for the rest of your life. Don’t put that kind of limitation on your happiness.
So—are you willing to look at things as they truly are? Because it’s pretty hard to do. On the other hand, who wants to be delusional? I doubt you are saying, “I want to be delusional—I would rather not see things as they really are.”
My favorite definition of education is from Josef Jungmann. He said that “education is the process of introducing a person to reality.” I love that definition, and it is so true. I have been involved with the field of education for many years, and I have helped to start a number of educational institutions, and I know from firsthand experience that this is indeed the goal of education—to introduce a person to reality.
However, sometimes reality is a hard thing. Reality can be painful. There is a reason people don’t go to the doctor when something is wrong; they don’t want to hear the diagnosis. They would rather delude themselves than face the reality that something might be wrong.
The great poet T. S. Eliot captured this phenomenon precisely when he said in his famous poem “Burnt Norton,” the first poem in his collection Four Quartets, that “humankind cannot bear very much reality.” He knew! He knew that we avoid reality.
I see this phenomenon all the time in the business and investment world. People love to fool themselves, to provide an answer that is more palatable, even if it is wrong. It is so prevalent that, in order to guard against it, we developed a concept in our business called “reality-based management.” In other words, manage based on the way things actually are, rather than how you wish they were. We even created a slogan for our business: “Measured by reality.”
Therefore, if you want to be wealthy, you are going to have to ask yourself, “Am I willing to deal with reality? Do I have the courage and fortitude to see things as they really are?”
Stated another way, can you ask “Why?” and keep on asking “Why?” If you can—and I strongly suggest that you try—you have a good chance of being wealthy.
You see, I want to change how you think about your future.
by Frank J. Hanna
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The college years are often referred to as “the best years of your life.” Author Frank J. Hanna believes your best years are still ahead of you, but only if you have a strategy for living that goes beyond what you learned in school.
According to Hanna, wealth and success are not what you think. Drawing on a lifetime of business experience, he proposes a radically different approach. He shows that wealth is not merely money, competition has a higher purpose than simply getting ahead, and a life of happiness is simpler to attain than we imagine.
If you are looking to succeed in the ways that really matter, Hanna’s simple message, conveyed with clarity and insight, will change your views of wealth and success. And it might just change the course of your post-graduate life entirely!
Back to A Graduate's Guide to Life (Hardcover)
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Alternative Headline Three Things They Don’t Teach You in College That Could Make All the Difference
Product Type Media Books
Product Notice Not available for resale.
Author Frank J. Hanna
Book Format Hardcover
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