“It’s what you learn after you know it all that counts.”
— Harry Truman
I was reading an obscure blog, “The Impact of the Affordable Care Act on Special Needs Planning” by Scott Solkoff, when I saw a line that jumped out.
“There will be new opportunities for special needs attorneys because of the complexity of the Affordable Care Act.”
That line made me realize two fundamental keys to success:
• Change is always going to make things more complex.
• Those who “get” the complexity will master the universe.
I’ve owned a computer since the first IBM PC 30 came out years ago. I spent countless hours learning how to program code, manipulate software and rewire machines in order to do something simple like calculate simple numbers.
On the other hand, my ability to quickly calculate numbers gave me a huge advantage over competitors, who still use pen and paper. Many of them did not make it.
Apple became the largest company in the world by sticking to the mantra of making their products simple to understand. I don’t need to do complicated programming to get an iPad to work. I just click on an application specifically designed to the task I want it to perform.
If I wanted, I could still do programming on an IBM XT. Part of me thinks that I spent years on a skill that is no longer needed.
However, the better part understands that the skill helped me get a competitive edge and fuel my desire to embrace change.
Most people are afraid of change. They want affirmation from “what everyone else is doing” and don't want to spend the time and effort to keep on educating themselves. I've been as guilty of that as anyone.
I realize that my stalling points in life came when I decided I “knew everything” and got lazy.
As Harry Truman said, “It’s what you learn after you know it all that counts.”
The first key to understanding Truman’s point is to recognize that you are never going to “know it all.”
The second key is that if you aren’t constantly trying to “know it all,” you are going to fall behind.
I see the world with a great divide of haves and have nots. I don’t see it as shaped by economics or ideology.
The divide is between people who are hungry to learn and those who aren’t.
The hottest countries on the world stage, like China and India, are fueled by the excitement of people willing to seek knowledge and embrace change.
A simple dynamic fueled their desire. Not long ago, they were two of the poorest countries in the world. They are seeing their quest for knowledge be rewarded with a better lifestyle for their families and themselves.
It’s a lot harder to embrace change when things are going pretty well. It’s also hard when you don’t see an immediate tangible result.
That is where education comes in.
One of my great frustrations of 21st century society is that the study of history is not cherished as it should be.
There is a lot of focus on dealing with the problems of the moment instead of recognizing that someone else dealt with a similar problem decades or centuries ago.
To use another Harry Truman quote, “The only thing new is the history you don’t know.”
That is why I sat and read all 906 pages in the Affordable Care Act. Several times. I read every nuance through the same lens: Where are the opportunities for myself and my clients?
I also viewed it through the lens of a historic event: The interstate highway system.
Just like Obamacare will do, the interstate highway system dramatically changed America.
Those who understood the opportunities prospered. Those who did not went out of business.
Although there were some who made money building roads and bridges, the overwhelming opportunities of the Interstate highway system were not on the surface.
One on both sides was Col. Harlan Sanders. He had a successful restaurant in Corbin, right on a main road, until Interstate 75 routed cars in a different direction. Broke at age 65, Sanders did not curse his bad luck.
He embraced change, such as the mobility of society spurred by interstate highways and the rise of fast food providers like McDonalds. By teaming up with smart businessmen, like former Kentucky Gov. John Y. Brown Jr., Sanders created one of the world’s most successful brands in Kentucky Fried Chicken.
There are immediate opportunities for my clients as Obamacare comes into law. What I am looking for is the less obvious opportunities, just like Col. Sanders.
History teaches us it was possible for an obscure Kentucky businessman to ride the waves of change to success.
As long as we are willing to embrace change and not be afraid of it.
Don McNay's fifth book, “Life Lessons from the Golf Course,” co-authored golf pro Clay Hamrick, will be officially released at Joseph Beth in Lexintgon on Tuesday, April 9, as a number one bestseller in the golf category.
“It’s what you learn after you know it all that counts.”
- Lifestyles & Community
Community invited to celebrate Mary Tate Weitkamp’s 80th Wednesday
You are invited come to Union City and celebrate Mary Tate Weitkamp’s 80th birthday on Wednesday night, Dec. 18. The party will be 6 p.m. at the Union City Ruritan. They request no gifts. Just bring a picture, card or a smile. Cake and punch will be served.
Christmas is less than two weeks away
Hello from Baldwin.
How is everyone’s week going? I hope everyone is having a great one. I also hope you are staying warm and safe.
Snow and cancellations allow us to slow down
Oh! What a great morning this Tuesday, Dec. 10, with a light snow falling and the sun is trying to shine. Isn’t life just wonderful!
Richmond’s Christmas parade is Friday night
Do you have most of your Christmas shopping done? If not, take a deep breath of air, make a hot cup of tea to clear your mind and schedule an upcoming day to finish your task.
Better safe than sorry with bad weather is forecast
How did you like the “snow day” on Tuesday?
Better safe than sorry, right?
According to the weather forecasters, more of the white stuff may be falling this weekend.
Ice forecast brings back memories of big storms
I am glad that this weather has been a hit or miss for us.
Al, Alice & Ruth holiday concert Friday
The Al, Alice & Ruth Holiday Musical Special is scheduled 7:30 p.m. Friday at the Berea Arena Theater. The show will feature special guest Richard Bellando. Featuring the sounds of banjo, guitar, mandolin and bass, the show will include both traditional tunes such as “Jingle Bells” and “What Child is This” and new Al, Alice & Ruth originals, “Caroling in the Snow” and “Starlit Lullaby.” Admission is $5.
Cold-weather horse nutrition
Winter may not arrive officially until Dec. 21, but wintry weather is already here.
Consider these ideas for feeding your horses this winter.
The first thing every horse owner should do is assess your horses’ body condition scores, or the amount of fat they are carrying.
This is simple numeric system, ranging from 1 to 9 that will help you adjust your horses’ diets so they are carrying the perfect amount of body weight.
Choose the right Christmas tree
When choosing a Christmas tree, freshness is the key. To ensure that your tree has optimum freshness, it is best to cut it yourself.
Now, that is not to say that you need to cut one out of your or your neighbor’s yard, but there are several tree farms in central Kentucky.
If you decide not to cut your own tree, there are several tree lots to choose from in the area. Many of the trees found on tree lots will probably not have been cut locally, but instead shipped in from other states such as North Carolina or even Colorado. Ask the vendor where the trees are from.
Winter chill means it’s soup time in Kentucky
I love the winter months because I can try some new and different soups. I use the crock pot for most of all my soups. Here are some recipes you might like to try.
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- Community invited to celebrate Mary Tate Weitkamp’s 80th Wednesday