Can’t we all just get along?

If people would have high esteem for themselves, and for other people, they would get together and have better solutions. Two minds are almost always better than one. This is the story of our lives, and of the many that have come before us. Collectively, why do we sometimes take the initiative, get together, and work things out, and other times, we run away?

Low Self-esteem. L.S.M.F.T.– Remember the cigarette commercial? Except it really means, “Low Self-esteem Means Friction and Trouble.”

Straw Man. “It’s not me, it’s that evil corporation I work for.”— It’s always easier to blame someone else, in this case, a corp. Except many times, “piercing the corporate veil” applies, and people are held just as accountable. Appeal to your contact to commit to recommend to their management as you suggest. “You will recommend that they do ______, right? And they always take your recommendation, right?”

Prejudice. We all have it– but can we deal with it? Dale Carnegie says, “When dealing with people, let us remember we are not dealing with creatures of logic. We are dealing with creatures of emotions, creatures bristling with prejudices and motivated by pride and vanity.” If we can marginalize our opponent as being somehow different than the majority of us, we seem to take that as an excuse for excluding them. For example, if someone were left-handed and from New Jersey, one could argue that those are the only people they should work with.

FEAR. False Evidence Appearing Real. We jump to conclusions without confirming our suspicions. Take a chill pill.

Passive Aggression. Instead of dealing directly with the source, we make others manage the source of our frustration.

Training. We do as we were trained, for good or for ill.

Doing the Right Thing. If we are trained correctly, we will do the right thing.

Sebastian Bailey, writing for Forbes Magazine, lists six ways to encourage rivals to team together:

  1. Put group goals above self-interest.
  2. Introduce a common enemy.
  3. Have everyone change perspective.
  4. Encourage open mindedness and emotional stability.
  5. Give each other the benefit of the doubt.
  6. Persevere.

A Common Enemy. In our Revolutionary War, French support was critical. La Fayette and Ben Franklin rallied the French because they had a common enemy in the British.

Common Language and Culture. Just like news anchors on TV, we have a large body of language and behavior that works for a wide cross-section of our society.

Humility. We are all flesh and blood. We are all less than perfect. We are all capable of doing less than our best. Let’s help each other!

Hackenbracht etymology

Jay Steele Blog is written by Jay Steel Hackenbracht. With a rather unique sirname, (think: hack und bracht — hoe and get broccoli/produce — you reap as you sow), I chose Steele for the purpose of this blog.

Steele etymology

The “Steele” sirname dates back to 1066 when William the Conquerer passed out sirnames. It could also be from the word “style” meaning “gate” or “turnstyle.” There were all kinds of professions that could assume such a moniker. Historically, some made swords, some made horseshoes, and among our particular ancestors, it seems a lot of Steeles have a history in dairy farming.


Many early Steeles were in Sandbach Parish, today’s county Chester. It is a popular name in Scotland, Ireland, Australia, and many other parts of the world. So far, I count about 20 different paternal lines that have emigrated to America. So, like Smith and Jones, a lot of Steel(e)s might not be related. Hackenbracht, on the other hand… well, let’s just say it takes a most tolerant, loving gal to be willing to take a name like that!!

A great number of my ancestors (and probably yours, too), were kicked out of some of the finest countries in Europe. Some were on the losing side of the Ulster Land War. Some were Catholic in a Protestant State, others were Protestant in a Catholic State. Some were Ashkenazic Jews, Secularists, or with religious fervor, emphatically claimed no religion at all. There is an abandoned orphan, probably born out of wedlock. There are ancestors from both sides of the English and American Civil Wars. Ancestral and related families are pretty much a Heinz 57 collection. As a result, like a whole lot of us, it seems we end up as “American.” We are a nation of immigrants.

Of course, the opinions expressed here are my own, and might not be those of my employers nor customers.  If you want to prove me wrong, I welcome the dialog, and reserve the right to change my mind.

I am told by some of the best intellectual property attorneys in Dallas, that anything in writing is born with a copyright, and I do need to let you know that it is protected. Anything from this blog (or from other websites of mine) is copyrighted by its rightful owner, reserving all rights. Permission for any re-use of my own materials must be in writing. If, in my view, I find that any re-use is particularly offensive or in poor taste, you are probably going to have to hire an attorney to resolve the issue. Please e-mail me at jayhack@swbell.net if you have any requests, good ideas, or just want to chat. Two minds are almost always better than one. So now you know.

You can find me at LinkedIn,
or, find me on Facebook.
I also send out an occasional tweet.
A favorite resource is Dale Carnegie’s Golden Book.
And another is this illustration on how to resolve conflict.

If people would get together, in groups of 2 or 3, I think they would be amazed at how much common ground they would find that they have.


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