Film Courage: The question is, what stands in most people’s way of achieving their dreams? It sounds simplistic…we can achieve our dreams and there are a million books the subject. What do you think is actually the block for most people?
One of my favorite stories…I was on Dr. Joyce Brothers television show years ago with a couple of other people and one of them who was a man who was then in his 80’s and had just received his law degree from The University of Chicago. He told her that he was standing in line for registration four years earlier and one of the young people in line behind him said “Sir, are you sure you’re in the right line?” And he said “And I turned around and I said what line should I be in?”
And I thought “That is America. That’s the essence of America,” you are in whatever line you want to be in this country. And he fearlessly walked up and stood in the line and got his law degree at the age of 86 or whatever he was. And to me, what stands in people’s way is fear and their friends inflict it on them.
One of the chapters in my book has to do with distinguishing between friends and friendly associates because when I left the academic world I had a few friends and I had lots of friendly associates. I learned the difference when I decided to leave because I retained a few friends. But most everybody I did not retain as friends because they thought I was absolutely crazy. They either thought that in kind of a benign way or they were just extremely angry that I was leaving a tenured position.
They thought that was completely ungrateful and crazy. I can also say that they were fearful about it and I knew them well enough to know that they were envious. They wished they could do it but they wouldn’t do it because they were set in their ways. That’s one of the reasons I didn’t like tenure because once you had tenure you didn’t have to publish anymore, you didn’t have to do anything anymore. And of course if you were truly motivated…(Watch the video interview on Youtube here).
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MORE VIDEOS WITH DR. KEN ATCHITY
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There are days when New York City seems to open its doors to you and every single piece falls nicely into place supporting the dream that brought you to that big wonderful city. Then there are the other days…the days when those same pieces become ill-fitting sharp-edged shards ganging up against you and any goal you may have. Those are the days when the cruel heartless city itself seems to be conspiring against you. Those are the days you know you’ve been…New YORK’d. It WILL happen to you…