• Awake and Fearless - Pam Boney, Founder and CEO - Tilt 365
  • A new character trait every week.
  • Bob Ostrom's cartoon strip.

Strengthen your mind and stop following others like a lemming. 
Strengthen your mind and stop following others like a lemming. 

Humans have a funny pattern of behavior that works like a charm for marketers, con artists and opportunists. If they can convince us everyone else is doing something, we can be amazingly naive, falling for fake news just because it’s in our new feed or buying new trendy products just because they keep showing up in our internet searches. Like, lemmings, we dive off the cliff after them, afraid we might miss out on something. Why do we do this? Because it’s easier to just go along and trust that if others are doing it, we should too, rather than being wise and doing our own research. 

To stop ourselves from being impulsive or gullible requires some intentional practice building. For example, when I see a new product that looks interesting, I might go look at it and even put it in my shopping cart, but I started a new practice a few years ago that works wonders. I NEVER buy it on the first look. I let it sit in the cart for at least a week and if I still want it then, maybe it’s a smart purchase. You can count on these marketers to send you follow up emails with offers and discounts in the meantime, so you will get a better price for waiting too. 

Sure, we all follow fads about some things. But being naive or impulsive about really important decisions can be disastrous for decades to come. When it comes to making life-defining decisions, the most important trait we can develop is to be Selective. Really, really selective. For example, staying in a job because everyone else is or because everyone else wants us to for their own reasons, equates to wasting precious years of our life. Or getting involved with someone that clearly isn’t good for us without realizing the physiological and psychological implications of getting attached to this person just by being around them is not likely to make you happy over the long run. Psychologists say “be careful who you hang out with because you will become more like them over time”. And they know what they’re talking about. 

It definitely takes courage to be selective and original. It also takes the patience to reflect on the life you want and a skill for delayed gratification to wait for the right timing. Even then, being committed to your own ultimate happiness requires great tenacity, courage and certainty paired with imagination to find and deliver your true creative purpose. People who do this have been willing to question everything that comes into their line of sight and select only that which leads them to their greatest desires. 

No one really knows why some lemmings jump off of cliffs and others don’t. But those who do are sadly swimming to their deaths in an act of mass suicide, blindly trying to get to the other side that never comes. Maybe it’s natures way of ensuring that only the wisest survive. Natural selection of the fittest. 

To be selective is to practice fitness of the mind. Watch out for those lemmings.