The Art of Losing

I’ve lost so many times in my life. I’m a television writer, for Christ’s sake. I literally get paid to come up with ideas for people to shoot down. And that is why I feel uniquely qualified to deliver the following advice to Donald Trump. Mr. President, I beg you, embrace this coming year. Look inward. Move forward and learn from this unique experience.

The challenge for so many people who grow up surrounded by wealth and privilege is that their failures are few and far between. And when failures do occur, they are shielded and padded so much that in the end, they don’t resemble failure at all: You were cheated. They took it away from you. If they could only see. Besides, you’re fine without them. You’ve heard all these before. We all have. They are an integral part of the human experience. But in the end, some of us grow and some don’t.

Being poor, not connected, disenfranchised, failing, and starting from scratch, these challenges provide a tremendous advantage. A silver lining, if you will. And that is the power which can only come from giving it your all, and still coming up short. To have no buffer between you and the truth. Having to deal with the consequences of your choices. Reality, if you will. (Will you?)

Here are a few lessons I believe Donald Trump can learn from his Presidential experience:

1. Treat everyone with respect, even though you may not agree with their positions.
2. Remember, everyone is dealing with their own problems. Approach with caution.
3. Listen to the experts around you. You may choose another path, but first, listen.

I’m going to stop at three, because these are some of the big ones. But the beauty of life is that there is always something new to learn. We can always grow. We have the opportunity to become better people, each and every moment of every day. I know I still have a lot to learn and that I am by no means perfect. But I’m trying. Let’s all try harder this year. We owe it to ourselves and to our country. 

Okay, now it’s time to get some notes on my new pilot. Wish me luck. ❏

Aaron Wiener is a television writer who’s worked on shows like Bones, Body Of Proof, AP Bio, Ground Floor, The Soul Man, Game Shakers, and Sydney To The Max.

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