I often shock people when I recommend an Ayn Rand book titled, “The Virtue of Selfishness.” They have so often received coaching that the way to success is to serve everyone else first. I think that is very bad advice…
The philosophy behind Rand’s book and one I subscribe to, is that we must all take care of our own needs first in order to really be of service to anyone else.
As I said in my last book, if you see your main purpose in life as serving others, you’re probably personally responsible for the founding of at least three Co-dependents Anonymous chapters. Let me go on the record and say, if your main purpose in life is to “serve others” – you have an extremely low opinion of yourself, don’t believe you are worthy, and will experience a tremendous amount of lack and limitation in your life. And if you tell me that your only purpose here on earth is to “serve God,” I think you ought to be in a straight jacket.
Perhaps you think I’m just a materialistic heathen and you would reply with a statement something like, “Really, I don’t need all those outside things to be happy. I don’t care about money and material things. A car just gets you from point A to point B. I am happy to live in a hut in the rain forest and teach the savages about Christianity. If I get enough grubs to eat, and a thatched roof over my head I am satisfied. I am serving others, which is the noble thing. I am doing God’s work, and I will be rewarded in the afterlife.”
If you feel that way after everything you’ve read so far, stop reading now. You’re so far gone, there is nothing I can do for you. Sell all of your possessions immediately and commit to life as an ascetic. Frankly I think you’re nuts.
I say that because I would define insanity as unsoundness of mind to render a person unfit to maintain a relationship, or look after his or her own needs for emotional well being and survival.
People who spend their existence worrying solely about the needs of others and not themselves are not noble, benevolent, and spiritual. They are just crazy.
So I was a little nervous a while back when my friend Bob Burg asked me to endorse the Go Giver book he was authoring with John David Mann. I’ve known both guys for a long time and had a great deal of respect and affection for each. I love their work, but didn’t want to promote a book if it contained the familiar lack programming about sacrificing your own prosperity for the “greater good.”
Fortunately Bob shares my Libertarian and Objectivist philosophies and he and John understand that true prosperity is built on exchanges of value. And that was the focus of their book. I was happy to endorse it and happier still that it went on to become a bestseller.
Now they’re at it again…
They have a new book that just launched today, titled “Go Givers Sell More.” I got an advance copy and can tell you that it needs to be in your library. The sequel picks up where the first book left off - giving you real world methods and examples of applying the value-for value principles to grow your business.
Get it now and they’re offering some special bonuses to thank you for your support. Grab the book now and let’s help spread this empowering message to the masses.
Get it here:
And after you read it, please check back and share what you think of it and how it has helped you.
You are always such a wave maker... you rock the boat and get people all riled up. I don`t agree with you on so many levels but at the same time I love so much of what you say... guess you could call it a love hate relationship!
I do agree with the concept of the Go Giver and love BB`s books.... so I will agree with recommendation on this one and just disregard what I don`t agree with from the rest of the post!
Live a Juicy Life,
Excellent post Randy!
And yes, I totally agree with being "Selfish" which you state it as "Enlightened Self-Interest" in your latest book. I propose that we must be "Selfish" enough to serve & value ourselves first and foremost before we can ever think about serving anyone else.
Also I will check out Bob Burg's new book "Go Givers Sell More" which you are endorsing.
Much Love 🙂
Regarding service, surely its the standpoint/mindset from which you are serving which matters.
For example, if you have something, you give that away because you feel that you have to sacrifice yours for the good of others - then thats anti prosperity.
However, surly if you take that same thing but you give it away for free as a means of harnessing the law off giving and receiving, knowing that the universe will bring you something greater then thats prosperity conducive isnt it? You`re doing it joyfully and from a selfish standpoint
What are your thoughts Randy?
Randy, I have mentioned this a few times, yet never read a comment from you on this: Could you please let me know what you think? If someone (my Rabbi) gives value to his community and wealthy people from his community appreciate his guidance, humility, spirituality, etc and pay him large sums of money so that he can travel, live in a nice home, have a personal driver, isn't that prosperity? His bank account is empty but the community is always throwing money at him-the Rabbi is always studying the bible, meditating, and connecting on a whole other level with his spirituality and people flock to him. Isn't that prosperity as well? He has a real belief that G-d is a king and he is the kings child and the king would always take care of his son regardless if he works or not. So, people who are working are ultimatelly the "servants" of him-because trust me, he has everything he can ever possibly need or want and never held down a job in his life. (we don't pay Rabbis the way churches pay priests. It all comes from personal donations directly to him from community people)
Yes it sounds like he is prosperous. He may not be getting a big paycheck, but if he is getting the things a paycheck can buy, it ends up being the same result.
Much like I felt that Mother Theresa could never pay for anything even if she would have wanted to.
All I can say Randy is that I totally love this work you do!
As a proponent of Ayn Rand's work, as well as Wallace Wattles "Science of Getting Rich", I'm curious about your perspective with respect to a principle in Wattle's book. Since I'm quite sure you've read it and understand the value, how do you feel about 'giving more use value than the cash value you receive' for service rendered?
I realize this isn't exactly the issue here, but just the same, I wonder where you stand. Needless to say, ANY business that delivers a high perceived value in comparison to what was paid is viewed by the receiver as a great deal that made a difference. So in some ways, this is service to others, but ultimately we who receive the compensation are being fulfilled, correct?
I love you. And I love Bob Burg. I preordered it months ago!
You both have unique styles... that influence me in different directions.... Thanks for this.
It's posts like these that remind me why I love you. Thank you.
I think that some may misunderstand Rand and selfishness because they base it on the common definition.
I can help someone and be selfish at the same time. The key is why I do what I do.
Years a go my partner asked me why I did the things I did for her and I responded "Purely for selfish reasons"
You can follow Objectivist philosophies and still give and help others, just recognize that you are doing it for selfish reasons, which is not a bad thing.
I would love to buy the book but is complicated in the country I live in.
Want to tell you I really enjoy the reading and laugh a lot
because if I had known this earlier in my life sure would had
been easier. And now I fully understand what you mean and I
laugh at myself and do not take life so seriously.
Read the book by Ayn Rand and totally agree. I lived most of my adult life believing that I needed to be serving somebody, anybody and guess what? I finally figured out through my life coach exactly what you just said. We have to take care of ourself before we can benefit anyone or anything else in this life. I am so thankful that I finally learned that lesson.
In my belief system, we believe you can't out give the universe.
But you love me more than Bob, right?
More ?! You joker! Do I have to answer?
Now, I love you both in very different ways... I'm always happy to explode in words of how and why I love you all the time.
But if I get too gushy you'll post something about sentimental crap... what's that word - treacly!
So i'll leave it as: I love you each in special and unique ways - and LOTS! And more than you feel it...
And all the time you need reminding I'm more than happy to overflow in the delicious joy of expressing love for you.
Interesting, Randy; I was going to ask Natalie the *exact* same question as you asked her, but there was one tiny replacement word...almost insignificantly different. I believe my question read (now, realize, you might not even notice the difference), "But you love me more than Randy, right?"
Hey, thank you SO MUCH for talking about John David Mann's and my book and linking to it.
My Idea of service is offering value. I believe in the Bible saying..."If you want to be the greatest, then be the servant of all". I believe service or servant-hood is offering value which solves a need...not sacrificing yourself which as the late Jim Rohn said.."breeds contempt".
What do you think??
I am going to read the book by Ayn Rand.
I agree that "We have to take care of ourself before we can benefit anyone or anything else in this life. I am so thankful that I finally learned that lesson."
I have learned that lesson also.
I am happy and I am grateful for Randy & everyone on this blog who shares information.
LOL, you go dude!
I'd agree with Jim.
I completely agree with Randy on this one. Causing lack in yourself to benefit someone is doesn't do anyone any good. I come from a taoist point of view on generosity and giving. Imbalancing yourself is never a good idea.
If people choose to follow that path and it works for them, that's awesome. For all practical purposes, however, it's better to be generous with something of which you have an abundance.
If you've got lots of love, give it away. If you've got a strong back, work hard. If you've got a boatload of cash, give some to whatever cause feels right for you at the time. Give what you've got a surplus of to generate more of what you need.
Thanks to everybody for sharing their thoughts. Have a great day.
“If everyone would clean their own doorstep, the world would be clean”
If everybody take care of their prosperity gaining and share the benefit of it success there sure gonna be more beutiness out there.
Fortunately Bob shares my Libertarian and Objectivist philosophies and he and John understand that true prosperity is built on exchanges of value.
Well, I am a social democrat. I believe the 10th richest person in the world is a Swedish. In sweden, everyone has a roof,health insurance plus the basics.
Making money is not exclusive to your Libertarian philosophy. In fact, I believe they are two libertarians congressmen in the U.S. Congress.
Should I believe you or Warren Buffet who is a Democrat? Who makes more money? Warren Buffett wants more regulation of our financial markets which the so "called less goverment philosophy" allow the CEO of the banks to bankrupted the banks while they gave themselves $20 millions in compensation. This is legalized corruptions.
I don't have to be a Libertarian or an Objective philosopher to to make money. Most billionaries are not libertarian.
There is no logical link between those two beliefs.
I agree 100% with you Randy. I have spent to many years serving others ( canadian goverment) and others and have nouthing to so for it. Now I learned from the best and my life has changed. Looking out for yourself first can reward many more
I just bought "Go-Givers Sell More"... looking forward to reading it!
Does sharing your life lessons keep you in victimhood or does it help you to share your lessons as well as help others who are open/ready to listen?
lolol!!! This back and forth makes me laugh!!
"You will be as much value to others as you have been to yourself."~ Marcus T. Cicero
I love Patrick's clarification on this point. My own philosophy is related to air travel: when the oxygen masks fall from the ceiling, you have to put on your own before you can help the person next to you.
Here's hoping we all start to breathe a little easier.