What We Can Learn from Donald Trump’s Win
First of all, let me just say that I am not a supporter of Trump. I was appalled and disgusted by his sexism, dishonesty, racism and selfishness. Like most rational people, I was sorely disappointed that Hillary Clinton, the most qualified candidate, did not win. It seemed that the American people had been taken in by a great con artist who played on their fears and dreams.
What can we learn from this? What does this mean? How do we explain this to our children?
I always believe that it is not the experiences we have that shape our lives. It is what we choose to focus on and our interpretation of these events that ultimately shape our thoughts, emotions, actions and destiny. We can choose to interpret things in a way that empowers us to become better people or give meaning to experiences in a way that disempowers us.
It is easy to draw the worst lessons from Trump’s win. I have heard people say:
”This proves that working hard, doing your homework and being qualified is no longer important. Ultimately, it is the person who bullshits the most who will get the job”.
“ It’s okay to be ignorant, racist, sexist and vulgar. As long as you prey on people’s fears, you will win” …
If these are the lessons we take away from all this, then it would be a tragedy.
Is there anything truly good we can learn from this? I believe there is. One good thing you can learn from Trump is his ‘never say die’ attitude to fight to the very end, in the face of insurmountable odds. Almost everyone was against him (and rightly so). The media, the party elites, the world laughed at him, written him off countless times and threw everything they could at him. Celebrities and billionaires from Lady Gaga to Warren Buffett denounced him. Billions were spent on negative ads to discredit him daily.
Yet, he continued to campaign with his unshakable confidence. He believed in his own bullshit so much that it became real (he said the polls were fake… they were really inaccurate). In a way, it reminds me of Steve Jobs who created his own reality distortion field. They both believed in his own bullshit so much that the bullshit became real. In the words of George Costanza on Seinfeld, “ Jerry, It is not a lie… if you believe it”. Am I advocating dishonesty? Of course not! The lesson to learn is the power of self-belief in creating the reality we want. Always believe in yourself, even if the whole world doesn’t and you will prevail. Let’s learn the good traits from Trump and disregard the bad ones.
Imagine if you were 70 years old (Trump’s age), would you have the stamina and fortitude to keep fighting and speaking at multiple events in multiple states with almost no chance of winning? He did. And that is something we can all learn from. So, no matter how old you are and no matter how hopeless the situation, you keep fighting! You keep pushing! Anything is possible!
God Does Not Give Us What We Want. He Gives Us What We Need.
I have had some religious people say to me, “ Why did God allow Trump to be President? It’s not fair that good things happen to bad people”. As they questioned their faith, I said to them, “God Does Not Give Us What We Want. He Gives Us What We Need”.
I cannot profess to know about God’s plan but here is a theory that I choose to believe. I believe that God gives us what we deserve and what we need.
Maybe after years of sacrifice and public service, Hillary deserves to take a break and finally take care of herself and her family. She has done enough for others. Maybe at the age of 70 herself, it is best she spends her last 10-20 years with people who truly love her than solving the world’s conflicts and be defending attacks from adversaries for the next 8 years. Maybe she has earned her dues. Maybe by losing, she actually won her life back.
After criticizing Obama’s administration for doing a lousy job and bragging about how easy it is to make America great again, Trump is getting what he deserves… which is to be in the President’s shoes and learning how difficult the job truly is. If you look at his body language when he went to the White house, it’s saying, ‘God! What have I gotten myself into?’
Maybe through this experience, Trump will learn about how to become a better person. Maybe that’s God’s plan for him. With the world’s problems now on his shoulders, having to face and answer to millions of people who now depend on him for their future, maybe he will finally grow spiritually and develop empathy, compassion and respect for others. Again, God does not give us what we want. He gives us what we need.