12.16.2012

30 Minutes - A Three Year Plan?

Hi. It's Joe.

My New Year's Resolution in 2013 is to write and publish (on Kindle) my book. This is the culmination of a three year plan.

I knew I wanted to write a book after I took a self imposed sabbatical from my job at the vitamin company in 2009, and so I have been laying the groundwork, training myself in writing, researching various topics, but it hadn't really crystallized for me until this past year.

I have been working in corporate America for THE MAN for over 12 years. I have met a lot of good people and a lot of bad people in corporate America. I have seen the inner workings of the corporate machine, how it works well and how it fails. I have worked for huge companies, as well as small and medium sized ones.

But most of all, I learned how to survive in it and self actualize my own creative ambitions, without being demoralized or having my soul sucked out - by working to live, not living to work. Indeed, I have thrived in it by adopting a positive attitude that my life is more important than THE MAN's. I learned how to have fun and achieve satisfaction, regardless of who or what in corporate America was trying to put the kibosh on that.

It occurred to me that I have essentially been doing qualitative anthropological research on the corporate culture for all of that time. My life among the cube drones.

THE MAN and I don't see eye to eye very often, as you probably know. THE MAN isn't a real man. He's a fabrication, the anthropomorphization of the corporate entity, an amalgamation of the many individuals and institutions that comprise MANAGEMENT. Yet we tend to have a visceral fear of THE MAN. Who is THE MAN?

There is no individual person that you need to fear in corporate America. There is only the illusion of fear. No one is better than you and no one has dominion over you. If you are a submissive person at work, it is because you succumb to fear of rejection or retaliation. Even the CEO of the company is not better than you. The last CEO of the company I now work for was fired by the board of directors because he sucked goat balls and was driving the company into the ground.

The truth is that you are the best at being you and other people are the best at being them, even if that means they are really good at being douchebags. But they are not better than you at being you. You trump them every time.

You have to be you. That's it. Respect yourself and take no crap from people you don't respect. By definition, the people you do respect will not give you crap. You respect them because they respect and value you. It's mutual.

My book will be all about your value and how you can demand compensation for your value and get it. THE MAN won't often give it. He's not human. He's not moral or ethical. His goal is profits. He'd pay you minimum wage and no benefits if he could. Upper managers tend to best personify THE MAN, because they have a higher quotient of douchebaggery and self-importance, while lacking empathy and compassion. But they are not really THE MAN.

In fact, you have to be a self-important douche in order to make it into management. By definition, these are the people who were willing to step on the heads of other people to move up. It's rare to find a true leader who is respected in management. 

We have a strategy where I work called "giving yourself a raise." When THE MAN does something that disrespects your value as a human being, you need to be compensated. Every month, one of the greasy docuhebag managers at my workplace has a meeting on behalf of another greasy douchebag, who never shows up. It's the most useless waste of time, sucking our souls and taking an hour out of our day. They used to give us food, since it cut into the lunch hour, but now they have even taken that away. Fail. We will never get that hour back.

Except we do get it back. We give ourselves a raise on THE MAN's dime. That meeting is a violation of our human rights, far outside the scope of our job descriptions. So we grant ourselves a free hour of comp time to do whatever we want. This often involves going to the local pub and bitching about douchebag managers. But it could be going for a walk for an hour or leaving work an hour early. It's OUR hour and we won't willingly give it to THE MAN without some compensatory value, when it drains us of the will to live and makes us completely unproductive for an hour.

For over two years now, I have been writing every single day, a minimum of 10 minutes, but sometimes a lot more. I love to write and this two years of daily writing practice has paid off. I am ready to write the book. I have a year and that's more than ample. Recall that my 2012 NY Resolution was to learn jazz piano. I have been doing it. I'm not great, but I am a lot better and I am dedicated to it.

It's hard to quantify it, but for myself, I know it is much easier to write now than it was when I started, as a result of my daily writing exercise. It's much like a sport. You need to train daily, a little or a lot. In fact, with this blog in particular, I usually just free write whatever I am thinking about. It seldom makes sense, but it is good writing as far as form and structure.

As for yourself, if you are still reading this, then it is good writing in the sense that it did not lose your interest. In school, writing teachers used to say, "a good story is one that makes people keep reading." That's it. If you are still reading, like this post.

And thanks!

My book isn't going to be long, but it will be entertaining. It will not cost too much either. I am going to publish on Kindle with an "on demand" option for people who want the hard copy. Maybe $5. Price of a latte. Would you buy it?

I guess you probably need more information. Maybe I will give you a sample soon. I have been doing the actual book content writing at a secret blog called JUICE YOUR LIFE. If you ping me, I will make you a reader so you can check it out and give me feedback. I'd love to know what you think.

Time.

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