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The Rules.

Posted By: Randy GageFebruary 22, 2013

Been getting lots of people asking if I’m going to weigh in on the debate raging in the comments section, over my use of a curse word in the Do the Work! post.  Ah…no. 

Not because I’m against dissent or people not agreeing with me.  Love that and always love a good debate.  But I’m looking for debates on the ideas.

Last time I checked, there were about 30 comments below the post:  Ten on Do the Work!, the brilliant book, and about 20 discussing my use of a curse word when writing about the book.  Something seems wrong with that picture.

I’m a wordsmith.  It’s what I do.  At my essence, I’m really a copywriter.  I write in the hope of causing people to act.  So the words I employ are chosen on purpose, never by languor, chance, or coincidence.  So you might think I’d delight in the debate to defend my choice of this or any other word.  No.  Because to do so would be to break the rules I have for my art.

So for those of you interested, here are the rules I follow for my work.  Feel free to adopt them or adapt them for your own work:

The Rules.

Don’t defend the work.  The work is the work.

Don’t debate the work.  The work is the work.

Don’t feed the trolls.  Some people come from different agendas and want to attack the motives for the work or the artist who did the work.  (Which, to be clear, I didn't think anyone was doing in this situation.)  Never get drawn into that, because there is the road to endless distractions.

Do defend and debate the ideas in the work.  That’s when things get really interesting.

Do allow people to challenge your beliefs.  That’s where the best breakthroughs live.

Don’t allow people to challenge your confidence.  You have enough self-doubt already, you don’t need to collect any more.  Tell your truth as you know it and let it stand.

Don’t try to please everybody.  In fact, do the opposite:  try to piss some people off, because if you did, then you’re probably doing something challenging, something fresh and something relevant.

These then are my rules.  For me.  You set your rules.  But they’re for you.

-RG

97 comments on “The Rules.”

  1. Excellent post, Randy!  Don't despair, though, much of the Bible is debated over single words, rather than entire concepts.

  2. Excellent post, Randy!  Don't despair, though, much of the Bible is debated over single words, rather than entire concepts.

  3. Agreed Randy! The beauty of entrepreneurship is the ability to be our own boss and create our own rules. In my rule book, I follow The Golden Rule. That's one of my two core values and the rule I choose to guide my thoughts, words and actions.
     
    Ultimately, when we are true to who we are and tap in to our authentic power, we will attract those who are seeking the message we share — and the ones who are clamoring to make noise will always be there to just make noise. Hey, someone has to be the noisemaker, while the serious ones are getting the job done!
     
    ;-)~ CLB

  4. Agreed Randy! The beauty of entrepreneurship is the ability to be our own boss and create our own rules. In my rule book, I follow The Golden Rule. That's one of my two core values and the rule I choose to guide my thoughts, words and actions.
     
    Ultimately, when we are true to who we are and tap in to our authentic power, we will attract those who are seeking the message we share — and the ones who are clamoring to make noise will always be there to just make noise. Hey, someone has to be the noisemaker, while the serious ones are getting the job done!
     
    ;-)~ CLB

  5. Well stated Randy!  I've had the same thing regarding some of my words, especially on social media. Ignore and move forward!  It matters not if some don't get me.  Their perception is their perception.  So what.

  6. Well stated Randy!  I've had the same thing regarding some of my words, especially on social media. Ignore and move forward!  It matters not if some don't get me.  Their perception is their perception.  So what.

  7. Randy, great insight.  All true.  Be true to yourself and dont bother with those trying to tear you down.  It will be a waste of effort as you say.  Focus on building up your positive following and doing what you know is right!

  8. Randy, great insight.  All true.  Be true to yourself and dont bother with those trying to tear you down.  It will be a waste of effort as you say.  Focus on building up your positive following and doing what you know is right!

  9. This one is my favorite - "Don’t try to please everybody. In fact, do the opposite: try to piss some people off, because if you did, then you’re probably doing something challenging, something fresh and something relevant." - Randy Gage

  10. This one is my favorite - "Don’t try to please everybody. In fact, do the opposite: try to piss some people off, because if you did, then you’re probably doing something challenging, something fresh and something relevant." - Randy Gage

  11. I can totally appreciate that. It seems good to have rules, or guidelines going in. That way you've already decided how to handle a situation and can be less likely to make "in the moment" decisions. Good stuff.

  12. I can totally appreciate that. It seems good to have rules, or guidelines going in. That way you've already decided how to handle a situation and can be less likely to make "in the moment" decisions. Good stuff.

  13. The principles all the rules are based on is what I am always looking for. I like this set.  Real close to what happens if you ignore gravity.  Thank you Randy.

  14. The principles all the rules are based on is what I am always looking for. I like this set.  Real close to what happens if you ignore gravity.  Thank you Randy.

  15. WOW, I feel really silly - I had to go back and read the post - I didn't even notice the curse word the first time - it just wasn't the focus of the posting!!! People - really? That's the only thing you saw in that post??

  16. WOW, I feel really silly - I had to go back and read the post - I didn't even notice the curse word the first time - it just wasn't the focus of the posting!!! People - really? That's the only thing you saw in that post??

  17. people spending time discussing a curse word in your book? Take it as a compliment, those folks taking time out of their day to visit your page, better than being ignored 🙂 Just let the trolls feed themselves, eventually they gonna feast on each other

  18. people spending time discussing a curse word in your book? Take it as a compliment, those folks taking time out of their day to visit your page, better than being ignored 🙂 Just let the trolls feed themselves, eventually they gonna feast on each other

  19. Setting our own rules are good when the playground is own by us. I feel that it is the freedom of the owner to do so. Discussions, suggestions, criticisms are welcome but does not mean that I am going to change.

  20. Setting our own rules are good when the playground is own by us. I feel that it is the freedom of the owner to do so. Discussions, suggestions, criticisms are welcome but does not mean that I am going to change.

  21. Great way to think of it. I do videos for YouTube (well ON YouTube), and I defend my work all the time, but I have learned better than to feed trolls. Thanks for the article, as it gave me a lot to think about in other areas og my life too 🙂

  22. Great way to think of it. I do videos for YouTube (well ON YouTube), and I defend my work all the time, but I have learned better than to feed trolls. Thanks for the article, as it gave me a lot to think about in other areas og my life too 🙂

  23. Ha ha - well said. And I may well adopt some (more) of your rules, especially the last three.
     
    Meanwhile, I guess it's just as well you weren't reviewing either of John C Parkin's excellent books (Google him if you don't know) - not that I''d be trying to put ideas in your head or anything 😉

  24. Ha ha - well said. And I may well adopt some (more) of your rules, especially the last three.
     
    Meanwhile, I guess it's just as well you weren't reviewing either of John C Parkin's excellent books (Google him if you don't know) - not that I''d be trying to put ideas in your head or anything 😉

  25. I LOVE IT!! As long as I can remember, I've pissed people off with my words and actions, including my parents.. My mantra has always been "Buck Authority" (or something close to it, LOL).. It's like you say, when everyone else is zigging its time to zag! Thanks Randy.. such a GREAT post.. And by the way, since I'm writing a screenplay right now, the use of 'off color' words actually adds texture.. And if people don't like it.. Well you already know what I think!

  26. I LOVE IT!! As long as I can remember, I've pissed people off with my words and actions, including my parents.. My mantra has always been "Buck Authority" (or something close to it, LOL).. It's like you say, when everyone else is zigging its time to zag! Thanks Randy.. such a GREAT post.. And by the way, since I'm writing a screenplay right now, the use of 'off color' words actually adds texture.. And if people don't like it.. Well you already know what I think!

  27. Okay, I guess I owe you a fucking apology for being a troll.  I never thought of it that way.  I don't want to be a troll anymore than I want to be MOST people.  That is me feeling defensive.  Which to be honest is a lot worse than being criticized for using the word fucking.  Can't we all just be friends for fuck sake. 
     
    Anyway, I love that show "Ancient Aliens" and that guy that created the series Giorgio Tsoukalos.  He has a really foul mouth on his fan page.  But, I just think that makes him more of a character.  And, do you know what?  He doesn't give a flip what people say about it, he just ignores it.

  28. Okay, I guess I owe you a fucking apology for being a troll.  I never thought of it that way.  I don't want to be a troll anymore than I want to be MOST people.  That is me feeling defensive.  Which to be honest is a lot worse than being criticized for using the word fucking.  Can't we all just be friends for fuck sake. 
     
    Anyway, I love that show "Ancient Aliens" and that guy that created the series Giorgio Tsoukalos.  He has a really foul mouth on his fan page.  But, I just think that makes him more of a character.  And, do you know what?  He doesn't give a flip what people say about it, he just ignores it.

  29. Yep what makes you happy and what you are passionate about is going to turn some people off. And of course we cannot please everyone. The world would be pretty boring if EVERYONE agreed with you.

  30. Yep what makes you happy and what you are passionate about is going to turn some people off. And of course we cannot please everyone. The world would be pretty boring if EVERYONE agreed with you.

  31. Yet again some more great ideas from Randy to add to my 'phucket list'
     
    Not allowing people to challenge my beliefs. Phucket!
    Allowing people to challenge my confidence. Phucket!
    Trying to please everybody. Phucket!

  32. Yet again some more great ideas from Randy to add to my 'phucket list'
     
    Not allowing people to challenge my beliefs. Phucket!
    Allowing people to challenge my confidence. Phucket!
    Trying to please everybody. Phucket!

  33. Why not dicsuss one rule at a time?  after all they are not rules but rather personal standards one may adopt in life

  34. Why not dicsuss one rule at a time?  after all they are not rules but rather personal standards one may adopt in life

  35. I am with bridie here Randy,   thanks for letting us know your rules, or standards in your life, afterall if you don;t stand for something you will fall for everything

  36. I am with bridie here Randy,   thanks for letting us know your rules, or standards in your life, afterall if you don;t stand for something you will fall for everything

  37. All sounds good.  The only quandary is that in this post you are responding to the other post (had a quick look just now, thought it was great), and therefore in effect you are defending your work and engaging in discussion about it.  Actually I think that's good - it's just that it's what you started out in this post saying that you won't do.

    1. @MarkReynolds I agree with you.  The post itself is a contradiction.  But, I think that it's okay to defend your work also. 🙂

  38. All sounds good.  The only quandary is that in this post you are responding to the other post (had a quick look just now, thought it was great), and therefore in effect you are defending your work and engaging in discussion about it.  Actually I think that's good - it's just that it's what you started out in this post saying that you won't do.

  39. @MarkReynolds I agree with you.  The post itself is a contradiction.  But, I think that it's okay to defend your work also. 🙂

  40. "Don't allow people to challenge your confidence. You have enough self-doubt already you don't need to collect more."   Hmmm...........  Randy, why does a NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLING AUTHOR, have self doubt?  Here's what I think, (since I am self admitted troll anyway) you should scrap all these rules, and follow one.  "KNOW THYSELF"    When you have faith and belief in your work and yourself, you will automatically know what to do when challenges arise.

  41. "Don't allow people to challenge your confidence. You have enough self-doubt already you don't need to collect more."   Hmmm...........  Randy, why does a NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLING AUTHOR, have self doubt?  Here's what I think, (since I am self admitted troll anyway) you should scrap all these rules, and follow one.  "KNOW THYSELF"    When you have faith and belief in your work and yourself, you will automatically know what to do when challenges arise.

  42. You can't please all the people all the time, some just love to people just need to focus on the negative! What a great life!!

  43. You can't please all the people all the time, some just love to people just need to focus on the negative! What a great life!!

  44. Hi Randy,
     
    I was fortunate to learn early on in life that I can not please everyone. I live my life according to my highest values. This has helped me to keep my focus. Whenever I am faced with challenges, I tell myself that I cannot please everyone. It is about living an authentic life. We all have different values. not everyone would agree with mine. That is okay.
     
    Thanks, Randy!
     
    Viola The Business Mum

  45. Hi Randy,
     
    I was fortunate to learn early on in life that I can not please everyone. I live my life according to my highest values. This has helped me to keep my focus. Whenever I am faced with challenges, I tell myself that I cannot please everyone. It is about living an authentic life. We all have different values. not everyone would agree with mine. That is okay.
     
    Thanks, Randy!
     
    Viola The Business Mum

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  • 97 comments on “The Rules.”

    1. Excellent post, Randy!  Don't despair, though, much of the Bible is debated over single words, rather than entire concepts.

    2. Excellent post, Randy!  Don't despair, though, much of the Bible is debated over single words, rather than entire concepts.

    3. Agreed Randy! The beauty of entrepreneurship is the ability to be our own boss and create our own rules. In my rule book, I follow The Golden Rule. That's one of my two core values and the rule I choose to guide my thoughts, words and actions.
       
      Ultimately, when we are true to who we are and tap in to our authentic power, we will attract those who are seeking the message we share — and the ones who are clamoring to make noise will always be there to just make noise. Hey, someone has to be the noisemaker, while the serious ones are getting the job done!
       
      ;-)~ CLB

    4. Agreed Randy! The beauty of entrepreneurship is the ability to be our own boss and create our own rules. In my rule book, I follow The Golden Rule. That's one of my two core values and the rule I choose to guide my thoughts, words and actions.
       
      Ultimately, when we are true to who we are and tap in to our authentic power, we will attract those who are seeking the message we share — and the ones who are clamoring to make noise will always be there to just make noise. Hey, someone has to be the noisemaker, while the serious ones are getting the job done!
       
      ;-)~ CLB

    5. Well stated Randy!  I've had the same thing regarding some of my words, especially on social media. Ignore and move forward!  It matters not if some don't get me.  Their perception is their perception.  So what.

    6. Well stated Randy!  I've had the same thing regarding some of my words, especially on social media. Ignore and move forward!  It matters not if some don't get me.  Their perception is their perception.  So what.

    7. Randy, great insight.  All true.  Be true to yourself and dont bother with those trying to tear you down.  It will be a waste of effort as you say.  Focus on building up your positive following and doing what you know is right!

    8. Randy, great insight.  All true.  Be true to yourself and dont bother with those trying to tear you down.  It will be a waste of effort as you say.  Focus on building up your positive following and doing what you know is right!

    9. This one is my favorite - "Don’t try to please everybody. In fact, do the opposite: try to piss some people off, because if you did, then you’re probably doing something challenging, something fresh and something relevant." - Randy Gage

    10. This one is my favorite - "Don’t try to please everybody. In fact, do the opposite: try to piss some people off, because if you did, then you’re probably doing something challenging, something fresh and something relevant." - Randy Gage

    11. I can totally appreciate that. It seems good to have rules, or guidelines going in. That way you've already decided how to handle a situation and can be less likely to make "in the moment" decisions. Good stuff.

    12. I can totally appreciate that. It seems good to have rules, or guidelines going in. That way you've already decided how to handle a situation and can be less likely to make "in the moment" decisions. Good stuff.

    13. The principles all the rules are based on is what I am always looking for. I like this set.  Real close to what happens if you ignore gravity.  Thank you Randy.

    14. The principles all the rules are based on is what I am always looking for. I like this set.  Real close to what happens if you ignore gravity.  Thank you Randy.

    15. WOW, I feel really silly - I had to go back and read the post - I didn't even notice the curse word the first time - it just wasn't the focus of the posting!!! People - really? That's the only thing you saw in that post??

    16. WOW, I feel really silly - I had to go back and read the post - I didn't even notice the curse word the first time - it just wasn't the focus of the posting!!! People - really? That's the only thing you saw in that post??

    17. people spending time discussing a curse word in your book? Take it as a compliment, those folks taking time out of their day to visit your page, better than being ignored 🙂 Just let the trolls feed themselves, eventually they gonna feast on each other

    18. people spending time discussing a curse word in your book? Take it as a compliment, those folks taking time out of their day to visit your page, better than being ignored 🙂 Just let the trolls feed themselves, eventually they gonna feast on each other

    19. Setting our own rules are good when the playground is own by us. I feel that it is the freedom of the owner to do so. Discussions, suggestions, criticisms are welcome but does not mean that I am going to change.

    20. Setting our own rules are good when the playground is own by us. I feel that it is the freedom of the owner to do so. Discussions, suggestions, criticisms are welcome but does not mean that I am going to change.

    21. Great way to think of it. I do videos for YouTube (well ON YouTube), and I defend my work all the time, but I have learned better than to feed trolls. Thanks for the article, as it gave me a lot to think about in other areas og my life too 🙂

    22. Great way to think of it. I do videos for YouTube (well ON YouTube), and I defend my work all the time, but I have learned better than to feed trolls. Thanks for the article, as it gave me a lot to think about in other areas og my life too 🙂

    23. Ha ha - well said. And I may well adopt some (more) of your rules, especially the last three.
       
      Meanwhile, I guess it's just as well you weren't reviewing either of John C Parkin's excellent books (Google him if you don't know) - not that I''d be trying to put ideas in your head or anything 😉

    24. Ha ha - well said. And I may well adopt some (more) of your rules, especially the last three.
       
      Meanwhile, I guess it's just as well you weren't reviewing either of John C Parkin's excellent books (Google him if you don't know) - not that I''d be trying to put ideas in your head or anything 😉

    25. I LOVE IT!! As long as I can remember, I've pissed people off with my words and actions, including my parents.. My mantra has always been "Buck Authority" (or something close to it, LOL).. It's like you say, when everyone else is zigging its time to zag! Thanks Randy.. such a GREAT post.. And by the way, since I'm writing a screenplay right now, the use of 'off color' words actually adds texture.. And if people don't like it.. Well you already know what I think!

    26. I LOVE IT!! As long as I can remember, I've pissed people off with my words and actions, including my parents.. My mantra has always been "Buck Authority" (or something close to it, LOL).. It's like you say, when everyone else is zigging its time to zag! Thanks Randy.. such a GREAT post.. And by the way, since I'm writing a screenplay right now, the use of 'off color' words actually adds texture.. And if people don't like it.. Well you already know what I think!

    27. Okay, I guess I owe you a fucking apology for being a troll.  I never thought of it that way.  I don't want to be a troll anymore than I want to be MOST people.  That is me feeling defensive.  Which to be honest is a lot worse than being criticized for using the word fucking.  Can't we all just be friends for fuck sake. 
       
      Anyway, I love that show "Ancient Aliens" and that guy that created the series Giorgio Tsoukalos.  He has a really foul mouth on his fan page.  But, I just think that makes him more of a character.  And, do you know what?  He doesn't give a flip what people say about it, he just ignores it.

    28. Okay, I guess I owe you a fucking apology for being a troll.  I never thought of it that way.  I don't want to be a troll anymore than I want to be MOST people.  That is me feeling defensive.  Which to be honest is a lot worse than being criticized for using the word fucking.  Can't we all just be friends for fuck sake. 
       
      Anyway, I love that show "Ancient Aliens" and that guy that created the series Giorgio Tsoukalos.  He has a really foul mouth on his fan page.  But, I just think that makes him more of a character.  And, do you know what?  He doesn't give a flip what people say about it, he just ignores it.

    29. Yep what makes you happy and what you are passionate about is going to turn some people off. And of course we cannot please everyone. The world would be pretty boring if EVERYONE agreed with you.

    30. Yep what makes you happy and what you are passionate about is going to turn some people off. And of course we cannot please everyone. The world would be pretty boring if EVERYONE agreed with you.

    31. Yet again some more great ideas from Randy to add to my 'phucket list'
       
      Not allowing people to challenge my beliefs. Phucket!
      Allowing people to challenge my confidence. Phucket!
      Trying to please everybody. Phucket!

    32. Yet again some more great ideas from Randy to add to my 'phucket list'
       
      Not allowing people to challenge my beliefs. Phucket!
      Allowing people to challenge my confidence. Phucket!
      Trying to please everybody. Phucket!

    33. Why not dicsuss one rule at a time?  after all they are not rules but rather personal standards one may adopt in life

    34. Why not dicsuss one rule at a time?  after all they are not rules but rather personal standards one may adopt in life

    35. I am with bridie here Randy,   thanks for letting us know your rules, or standards in your life, afterall if you don;t stand for something you will fall for everything

    36. I am with bridie here Randy,   thanks for letting us know your rules, or standards in your life, afterall if you don;t stand for something you will fall for everything

    37. All sounds good.  The only quandary is that in this post you are responding to the other post (had a quick look just now, thought it was great), and therefore in effect you are defending your work and engaging in discussion about it.  Actually I think that's good - it's just that it's what you started out in this post saying that you won't do.

      1. @MarkReynolds I agree with you.  The post itself is a contradiction.  But, I think that it's okay to defend your work also. 🙂

    38. All sounds good.  The only quandary is that in this post you are responding to the other post (had a quick look just now, thought it was great), and therefore in effect you are defending your work and engaging in discussion about it.  Actually I think that's good - it's just that it's what you started out in this post saying that you won't do.

    39. @MarkReynolds I agree with you.  The post itself is a contradiction.  But, I think that it's okay to defend your work also. 🙂

    40. "Don't allow people to challenge your confidence. You have enough self-doubt already you don't need to collect more."   Hmmm...........  Randy, why does a NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLING AUTHOR, have self doubt?  Here's what I think, (since I am self admitted troll anyway) you should scrap all these rules, and follow one.  "KNOW THYSELF"    When you have faith and belief in your work and yourself, you will automatically know what to do when challenges arise.

    41. "Don't allow people to challenge your confidence. You have enough self-doubt already you don't need to collect more."   Hmmm...........  Randy, why does a NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLING AUTHOR, have self doubt?  Here's what I think, (since I am self admitted troll anyway) you should scrap all these rules, and follow one.  "KNOW THYSELF"    When you have faith and belief in your work and yourself, you will automatically know what to do when challenges arise.

    42. You can't please all the people all the time, some just love to people just need to focus on the negative! What a great life!!

    43. You can't please all the people all the time, some just love to people just need to focus on the negative! What a great life!!

    44. Hi Randy,
       
      I was fortunate to learn early on in life that I can not please everyone. I live my life according to my highest values. This has helped me to keep my focus. Whenever I am faced with challenges, I tell myself that I cannot please everyone. It is about living an authentic life. We all have different values. not everyone would agree with mine. That is okay.
       
      Thanks, Randy!
       
      Viola The Business Mum

    45. Hi Randy,
       
      I was fortunate to learn early on in life that I can not please everyone. I live my life according to my highest values. This has helped me to keep my focus. Whenever I am faced with challenges, I tell myself that I cannot please everyone. It is about living an authentic life. We all have different values. not everyone would agree with mine. That is okay.
       
      Thanks, Randy!
       
      Viola The Business Mum

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