This article was originally written by Joseph Mattera. I took the liberty of correcting it to reflect rationalism making it useful for… reality.
1. Those who do not take responsibility for themselves.
The first step toward self-improvement is to remove all excuses for mediocrity or failure. Those that continually blame other people or dieties for their failures or succeesses will never be able to identify what the root cause was. Without this it can not be stopped (if failure) or reproduced (if success).
Leaders can complain about their spouses, the income level of their non-prrofit, the lack of staff, etc., but I have learned that within every challenge is the seed of opportunity for success, which requires the creativity of problem solving.
2. Those who do not have a desire to seek truth.
The definition of wisdom is “the ability to discern or judge what is true, right, or lasting.”
We do this by studying, measuring, and concluding based on evidence. To imply that there is a system outside of the scientific method that will yield results is to turn your back on reality. Those that spout pseudo-science or religous nonsense cannot be helped.
3. Those who create distance so they are not accountable.
There are certain people I have met in life who only let others get so close before cutting off the relationship. They are willing to tell you about their delusional religous beliefs, “pray for you,” and inform you that you are going to their fantasy hell. Yet when you challenge their belief, when you point out the failures in their arguments, the ignorance and denial displayed by them is madddening.
The easiest way to identify these individuals is that they make use of the fruits of science in their daily lives, some even claim to use the scientific method, but they will still tell you that refuted claims are acceptable as long as it defends the position of their faith.
Whether it is fear or rebellion, those who live like this have put a low ceiling on their lives and will not grow past the infant stage concerning their potential in life.
4. Those who insist on having a negative outlook on life.
Religous training can cause an individual to have an overwhelmingly negative view of life. When one believes they have been guaranteed a “do over” there is little reason to exert the effort to approach this life in a positive light. When you believe such garbage as “not of this world” or “not my real home” you have no reason to take this life seriously.
This is a weird way some folks attempt to shield their emotions from the pain of disappointment; it is a very common practice with many people. If you discover that you are communicating with someone that believes this existance is disposable, or isn’t the “real” one, how can this life have value, much less be approached positively?
I cannot empower a person who refuses to think rationally about themselves, the world, or life.
5. Those who refuse to have a vision for their future.
There are many very talented people I have been in relationship with who live their lives without any strategic plan or vision for their future. They are just living from day to day to prepare for their retirement.
Those who are successful have a compelling vision that drives them daily even more than the desire to make money. Inside of every human being is a desire for self-actualization.
If a person refuses to tap into that and value that vision as their barometer for success then my continual pep talks will not do the trick either.
6. Those who live in self-deception.
There are many people who are living lives of denial regarding rationalism a replacing it with a “relationship with god” to the detriment of their families and all things regarding their lives.
The sad thing is that denial is the first step to outright deception, in which a person concocts an alternate, false reality that continually feeds their mind and emotions the things they want to hear about themselves and their key relationships. This insulates them from reality and from others.
When you confront people like this, they become upset and blame you for not understanding them or for wrongfully accusing them of something. These are the people I cannot help unless reality steps in and delivers them from delusion and deception.
7. Those who do not want to pay the price for success.
There are many that want the perks of success but don’t want to pay the price for success.
Whatever we do in life, we are expected to sacrifice our time, invest our talents and be committed to a long, grueling process with many setbacks until we reach our peak performance. This kind of sacrifice is needed in every area we desire success in, including our marriages, relationships with our children, leading a company, etc.
Consequently, I have found that I am not able to empower a person to the fullness of their destiny if they don’t want to work hard at self-improvement.
8. Those whose primary agenda is socialistic.
There are some people whose only agenda in life is to advance their own agenda to control others.
They don’t want to work with a team. They want everyone else to invest their lives in the individuals cause, but they are rarely ever willing to pour back into me or people around them. The easiest way to explain this concept is “redistribuition,” or “forcibly take from those that have, to give to those that have not.”
I have learned that those who only want to use me or politics to advance their own agenda (even if it is socially related) have greatly limited their own lives. Thus, I back away from these people until they change.
This is because we are all human beings. We need to follow our individualistic sense of destiny, and sacrifice and invest our time for the good of ourselves and others. This, in turn, will do more to release self-actualization.
9. Those who refuse to keep privacy.
I have been with very talented individuals that I had to back away from because they did not know how to remain faithful to their obligations or because they broke confidence by continually talking behind other people’s backs.
Reality and rationalism dictate that a person who doesn’t keep their word can not be trusted. Would you want someone that you can not trust in your “inner circle” of friends?
10. Those who lack transparency, humility and integrity.
The Scientific method requires us to admit our faults.
Those that do not admit their faults cannot have the kind of relationship with a mentor suitable for personal growth.
It is important for me to have a transparent relationship with those I am mentoring since a person who deceives me is not giving me a chance to honestly speak into their life and help them in their areas of weakness and vice-versa. Those who want to progress have to learn to practice the discipline of admitting failure.