Mar 302014

Success correlates closely with faith in oneself.

Watch this video of Tracy McGrady in an extraordinary game against the Spurs. What an incredible 33 seconds. Believe you can, and you can.


Realists and pessimists lose a lot of games. Believe. There is no downside.

I.M. Optimism Man



Mar 192014

We have an efficient society, but far from a perfect one. People like to think the the cream always rises to the top, makes the big bucks, deserves all the respect and accolades. Meritocracy theory rules the day.

The truth is that we do live in a time of extraordinary opportunity. The market for talent, ideas, and creativity does give some people a change to become overnight successes in just 5 – 10 short years. But, there are also many other factors in play. If you ask a few questions at the right time, most entrepreneurial success stories that I hear always have one or more “…and then I got a lucky break…” moments in them. When you dig deeply, you tend to find other moments of extraordinary support from a third party, whether financial, resource, or connections. I have yet to find a person who really went from no where to the top of the world without some good fortune and a bit of assistance along the way.

Meritocracy is good, but if you are wise, you must also clearly see and understand the issues that surround it. The dark side of the coin is that it gives rise to a certain snobbery, a lot of jealousy, and tremendous frustration for those who make the wrong decision when faced with a crucial crossroads moment.

Here is a great little video that delves into the idea of meritocracy and whether it is truly possible. Alain de Botton: A kinder, gentler philosophy of success:


With all thy getting, get understanding.

I.M. Optimism Man

Mar 152014

Consider this little discussed fact:

Adjusted for inflation, the US Minimum Wage was less than $4 per hour as recently as the late 1940’s.¬†Right now, politicos are wrangling about the $7.25 minimum wage and if it should be raised a lot. This seems to be a continuation of the recent wage growth of the top 1% in the last 20 – 30 years. The real truth is that nearly everyone has grown much richer during the last 60 – 70 years.


We need to keep things in perspective.

Minimum wage expenses are better than they have ever been, the costs of increases always funded by the consumers, and minimum wage will never be the path to a posh and comfortable life. Far better to teach people how to produce greater value. With greater value comes better pay. But, all in all, the situation is not dire at all — there are plenty of jobs that pay above minimum wage for those that choose to be more positive and hustle more than the average.

I.M. Optimism Man