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Decent Human Beings

Out of nowhere, I heard a crash.

Two books came tumbling down from the bookshelf. I have no idea how. Nothing moved, no one touched them, there wasn’t an earthquake. I was on the other side of the room.

Everyone knows that if books are gonna fall from the sky  (err— my bookshelf) you must open to a random page in one of them and declare it a “sign from the universe.”

Which is precisely what I did.

The books that fell were Austin Kleon’s  Keep Going  and Steal Like An Artist.

So, I flipped to page 127 of Keep Going and there it was:

The world doesn’t necessarily need more great artists. It needs more decent human beings. 

I would argue we need both, but if I had a wish for us as a society it would be for more decent human beings. 

Ones who can be kind to each other. Have the hard conversations. Tell the truth. Stand in integrity. Who don’t let insecurities and fear win. Who don’t choose emotionally cheap ways through life. Who know tough isn’t strong and soft isn’t weak.

Who aren’t afraid to look at themselves in the mirror and face what they see.  Humans who have the courage to dream.

Life is too magnificent to waste it being miserable chasing on the outside what you can only get from the inside.

The world needs more decent human beings.

I hope you choose to be one.



PS: Last week I got some excellent questions about the distinction between hard work and ease, as well as the role of grace and self-compassion in the conversation on working hard. I think it’s worth us having a conversation on the distinction between “gratuitous suffering” and “hard work.” The two are not synonymous.

More on that soon.


PPS: Writing in Community Instructor and Pug-Mom, Kristin Hatcher, and I are collecting decent human beings over at  Brainstorm Road. It’s a community of practice organized around a weekly shipping commitment.

Hundreds of people are already on the waitlist to join. Come join us.  Learn more here.