If you read our book, you will know I struggle with anger from time to time. Even after all this wonderful life transformation you’ve read about, I sometimes get mad because I think people are trying personally attack me or somehow damage my reputation. That’s not the way it is at all. I am working very hard to manage my big ego and keep it in check. I grew up as a fighter in a small town with the belief I had to defend myself, a socially awkward boy living with a noncustodial mother doing her best to get by. I had some deficiencies I wanted to shield at all costs. My defense mechanisms soon became a habit, which translated into going through life thinking people were out to get me. It was a state of strange self-importance I still grapple with sometimes.
Here’s an example: the other day two guys were walking down the sidewalk in the opposite direction towards me. As the men approached, one of them said something and they both started laughing. I instantly got mad and looked back to see them minding their own business not bothering a thing. If you break it down, I thought I was so important that I was the subject matter of discussion between two guys I’d never met. That’s pretty sad.
After my father helped turn my failing life around, I have been trending upward with respect to the quality of life I maintain. About a minute after encountering those guys on the sidewalk, I paused to take a moment to think about how my brain was hijacked by such foolishness, all in the name of self-preservation. The more I thought about it I became embarrassed that such a diminutive, trivial encounter—one that had nothing to do with me—threw me off my game. I know I must continue to improve. I think we all do in different ways. It’s important to be mindful of our shortcomings and continue to grow and improve.