On the Rules No One Else is Playing By

The American Dream speaks the language of ambition and its tongue whispers it is not for lack of luck, but lack of effort that you are a failure. Put in the work and you’ll become a success. Luck nor social constructs or randomness or the genetic lottery create the richest men of the world – and they are men – but an exchange of value. The rules are: work hard and be rewarded in return. Except we know that’s not true.

“The U.S. has the 4th-highest degree of wealth inequality in the world, trailing only Russia, Ukraine, and Lebanon,” reports former U.S.

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Why Choose Passion and Purpose Over Short-Term Gain?

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Money is simply an exchange of value. On the one hand, that phrase allowed me to break past my money barriers a year ago. On the other, it’s complete horseshit.

At one time, money was an exchange of value. But today, when the top 20% of wealthy people hold 80% of the world’s stocks, something is wrong.

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Are Meetings Passé?

Meetings are a dying breed of face-to-face engagement that have taken on more angst, agony and abuse in recent years than even the lowly cubicle.

“There’s nothing more toxic to productivity than a meeting,” Jason Fried argues, author of the best-selling book, Rework, “They break your work day into small, incoherent pieces that disrupt your natural workflow. They often contain at least one moron that inevitably gets his turn to waste everyone’s time with nonsense… The goal is to avoid meetings. Every minute you avoid spending in a meeting is a minute you can get real work done instead.”

Did you get that?

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A plan to change the world

I have a dream book. Not the kind where you put your sleepy, bleary-eyed memories of the night before under shut-eye, but the kind where you sprint to write down all the excitement in your chest before it escapes you forever. The kind where you write down how, exactly, you plan to change the world.

I’ve had this dream book since Christmas of 1998, a gift from my mother. I read it over the other day, and smiled at this entry –

“I want my generation, the time that I live, to be great and remarkable and groundbreaking. I want my generation to be the one with the first black and woman presidents.”

This was before Obama and Hillary declared their intention to run for President of course, and before I knew how close my dream would soon be a reality.

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Will Gen Y ruin local community?

The recession has changed everything for Gen Y. While we continue to embrace idealism, meaningful change is much harder.

And while young people have the best intentions to be part of the communities we live in, we’re being challenged by a number of conflicting events that contribute to a lack of involvement in local community.

For starters, disillusionment towards faith and religion has forced the institution to turn its reign over to Facebook as chief community builder. And despite the fact that our social circles are shrinking and loneliness is increasing, we choose where we live, in part, by how easy it is for us to maintain our quasi-anonymity.

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Social media is difficult like intimacy

“Yeah, but it’s just a blog,” someone said. About this blog. My blog. We were talking about social media.

I didn’t have a response at the time. I was like George in that Seinfeld episode (he goes to great lengths to deliver a retort to a coworker), floundering for the perfect comeback.

I couldn’t come up with anything, and later realized that this person? This person doesn’t even have a blog. Pfft. How can you possibly understand the concept of social media if you’re not a participant?

Of course you can understand it on an intellectual level. Like, I understand war even though I’ve never been a soldier.

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Generation Y is the ER doctor of generations

At the bottom of the hospital hierarchy are ER doctors.

I know this because straight out of college I dated two med-students back to back. Also, Belle’s boyfriend is a neurosurgery resident. He never lets me forget it. Which is fine because I’m not the one who thinks that great veins are a turn on.

An emergency room is open twenty-four hours a day, and responds to everything that comes in. ER doctors have no specialization. They know a little about everything, and so they also know nothing.

Generation Y is the ER doctor of generations.

We’re doing pretty darn good.

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Generation Y is too quiet, too conservative

I was sitting in a classroom. The walls were covered in plaster and moldings, but behind all that was red brick, so red that the color seeped through the cracks of the old windows, and the sun, and the light, and the energy filled the almost summer air.

It was a time when I was – more or less – happy, and we were seated, twenty or twenty-five of us. Our desks outlined a jagged circle, and I was trying not to check out the young man three desks to the right, because I was still dating my first real boyfriend, trying to make it work from four hours away.

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The top 3 things you can do to save the world. Literally.

This post is part of Blog Action Day. I do not have any advertising on this site, so I cannot donate the revenue. Instead, I am donating .25 for every subscriber I have today and splitting the donation between my favorite online environmental charity and my favorite local environmental charity.

1. Ditch the car. I know a guy who drives a couple blocks from his condo to the bars. It’s one of those things that gets under my skin and makes me go crazy. The single best thing you can do to help the environment is to not own a car.

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Follow the cool people

Sam DavidsonThe handsome guy to the left is Sam Davidson, the co-founder and president of CoolPeopleCare, Inc.

Sam offers an incredibly unique and talented perspective to the Follow the Leader series:

“Telling the stories that need telling in order to motivate others to change the things that need changing, Sam is a social entrepreneur who believes in the power of local communities. He has spoken and written on the power of the Internet to change the world for the better, and specializes in studying new and emerging trends within the nonprofit sector, especially as they relate to younger generations. His first book, “New Day Revolution: How to Save the World in 24 Hours” will be available in October.

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How video games can show us how to engage Generation Y (or anyone)

Full disclosure and necessary reminiscing: I grew up with a second-hand Nintendo (shout out to my pals Mario Bros. and Legend of Zelda). Before that I played on a second-hand Atari (Pac-Man, Donkey Kong, you rock my world), and before that a really large second-hand computer filled the corner in my bedroom (Tetris– did life exist before you?). These days, I don’t play many video or computer games, but the ones that I occasionally happen upon are pretty cool, like this one, a modern day Pong/Tetris mashup addiction.

Here’s how video games can show companies, nonprofits, and others how to keep young talent engaged:

Give us a BIG challenge… Video games are not easy.

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