Life isn’t going to throw a few curve balls your way in the coming year. But what happens is only the catalyst: how you view things and how you respond to them is what defines the outcome of your life.
If we’re honest, no one ever sticks to them anyways. Instead, why not take a moment to consider where your thinking might be in a rut and how you can alter it. Goals are admirable but perhaps this year you’ll get closer to where you want to be if you change how you thinkabout getting there: rather than setting new resolutions with no idea how to achieve them.
Lately I’ve been watching a show called Suits. It is, of course, the best kind of television. It’s flashy, dramatic, and sexy. But I’ve learned a few things from Harvey Specter, despite him being a fictional character. Lessons about how the right perspective can change the world and that making your own luck is the best way to get lucky. So that’s what I’ll be focusing on this year:
Seven Life Lessons from Harvey Specter
1. Win before you even start
Harvey wins often because he closes every case he can before he goes to court. The take away? Don’t fixate on all the ways that things could go badly. Don’t waste your time and resources planning a rearguard action against problems that haven’t even happened yet.
Think outside the box. Try and solve your situations before they become problems. Then you are free to move on to bigger and better things
Remember: Self-fulfilling prophecy can be good and bad.
2. Life without risk is bland
Harvey takes risks. Sometimes he gambles with money or his reputation or he takes a chance on someone no one else will. But the possibility of loss exists. Those risks make for good TV but what makes for good TV also makes for a more interesting life.
Risks are scary but the truth is that people who succeed in life do so because they took risks. Playing life safe does mean that you can mitigate the unexpected. But the best moments in life are unexpected… so if you don’t take risks where does that leave you?
Safe and bored.
3. Learn to read people better
Harvey wins cases and poker because he knows people. Admittedly, it is TV and Harvey knows everything because it’s in the script. It isn’t as easy in real life.
But in real life, learning to read people is invaluable. Life is people. Taking the time to listen to the things that people say and the things they don’t say. It gives you insight into situations, compassion for other people, and makes other people like you.
All three of those things are powerful tools
4. Nothing is more valuable than your integrity
The show has created a character that is honest. I like that there is a character on TV committed to ideals like honesty and fair play.
Integrity is something highly admired in our world. More so because it is a quality that appears to be more and more rare. Stick to your morals even if it appears to leave you at a disadvantage. The truth is you might lose out on the immediate situation by refusing to compromise. But the long term benefits of being known for honesty, loyalty, and integrity far outweigh the losses.
5. Don’t let “unfair” derail you: work for your luck
One of the hardest things in life is to be on the wrong end of unfair. Life isn’t like TV and we all know it. It seems like some people get all the breaks and the rest of us are left to fight over the scraps.
Waiting for unfairness to resolve itself isn’t the right course of action though. Those people that seem to get all the breaks? It’s because they work for it. Luck isn’t really a thing. It’s not a ghostly cloud of goodwill that floats around the world.
Luck happens when you work hard.
6. Don’t just wait for your life to happen
I’m not implying that having dreams is a bad thing. Harvey’s character is emotionally cold. I, personally, like the hope that having a dream provides. Thinking big is important. If you don’t aim for something that might be unattainable, you’ll never get anywhere.
But dreams will never happen if you don’t envision how to get there. Just waiting and hoping isn’t enough. The difference between dreams and goals is the steps you take to get there.
All of the previous lessons are handy and helpful. But the truth is that life pitches curve balls once in a while. There’s no denying that. When the going gets rough, that’s when my last life lesson from Harvey comes in handy.No matter how bad life gets, don’t give up. It’s not just that you need to keep your confidence up. Don’t give up on finding a solution. If you’re stuck in a corner, think outside the box. There is always a solution.
Sometimes adversity generates the most creative solutions!