- Posted by James Altucher
I got an email this morning that said, “I disagree with you on Immigration. Unsubscribe.”
So I guess after 280 posts where I’ve written about transvestite prostitutes, and every other topic under the sun, I finally said something that offended this guy so much he could NEVER EVER read me again. “Unsubscribe.”
I wish I could say that to anyone. “I don’t like the way you spoke to me. Unsubscribe.” Or, to a waiter…”You forgot to get me that water I asked for. Unsubscribe.” Or to a relative, “That email was not nice. I unsubscribe from the family.” Or even to Claudia. “This coffee is cold. I unsubscribe from your coffee.”
But let’s get back to immigration for a second. I wrote back to this guy and said, “would you be willing to prep the onions at the sushi restaurant around the corner from me.” Or do any of your friends want to do it? Because who does he think is doing it? Nobody in that kitchen even speaks English. Is he willing to be the one English speaker there? Or what about his great-grandfather, who came to the US as an immigrant.
“Don’t write about your grandfather,”my dad once told me when I was in third grade and writing about my family history for a school assignment. My grandfather was an illegal immigrant for the 60 or so years he was in the United States. I had another great great grandmother on my mom’s side who snuck in in a suitcase.
America is a country of fighters. People who fought their way in and then continued fighting. My wife is an immigrant and had to fight and fight and fight. Dealing with bosses who felt they didn’t have to pay her because of her immigrant status, dealing with the fear of not getting green card or eventual citizenship, paying her way through college in the misplaced hopes that in America that guarantees a better life (the day she got her degree she asked for a raise and they laughed in her face).
And now back to Unsubscribing. I am officially unsubscribing from any gossip about the Kardashians. Here’s the last Kardashian image I will ever post. Goodbye Bruce Jenner! Whatever happened to your Wheaties boxes!?
And I’m unsubscribing to anything about this boring election. Particularly the Republican debates. How boring can you get? What a waste of time (other than Perry’s “oops”).
Please wake me up when the election is over.
Meanwhile, here are things I’m unsubscribing to, just like my email fan described above. I’m with my email commenter. We only have real attention for a few things. So if you want to succeed and be happy you need to unsubscribe to as much as possible. Every day should be filled with unsubscriptions:
- Four seasons. It’s bullshit they expect us to actually like the coldest part of winter and the hottest part of summer. As soon as my kids graduate high school I’m moving away from four season territory. Meanwhile, each year I plan on traveling during the annoying months.
- Phones. I can NEVER hear anyone on the phone. I DO NOT like talking to people on the phone. Here is my phone number. I never pick up. Skype is a different story. I’m going to switch my number to Skype, get a Bluetooth headset, and just use skype on my ipad. Most phone calls, just like most meetings (see below), are time I could’ve spent writing or reading or thinking. But at least with Skype I can hear people digitally (clear) instead of trying to hear over some antiquated protocol developed by AT&T in 1958.
- News. But we’ve covered that before.
- Meetings. For me to go to a one hour meeting means getting there, small chat, meeting, more small chat, and getting home. Its hard work! It’s at least three hours of time. Unsubscribe. I can do it via my phone. See above.
- Rankings. I keep track of my blog stats, facebook subs, my Amazon rank, twitter followers, facebook likes per posts, my chess ranking. I get stressed when they all don’t go up. I guess watching them go up tells you if you are doing a good job or not but I should have more confidence. I’m going to unsubscribe to paying attention to any of that and I bet I would be happier. I am suspicious of my nasty subconscious that it’s more than just noting whether or not that I am doing a good job but I feel more “loved” when those numbers go up. Which is not a good way to be. So I’m going to endeavor to unsubscribe from these daily cares.
- All of my possessions except for my ipad and a change of clothes. More on that in a future post. But to start off with, less possessions every day. I just threw out 16 boxes of my old comic books.
- Politics. I will continue to not pay attention to this Presidential election unless there is a leaked sex tape. Which also means I can’t really watch Jon Stewart which is unfortunate but also saves me time.
- Worry about any one deal. I’m trying to do a particular transaction right now. Most likely, like most deals, it doesn’t go through. But that’s ok. The key is quantity, not quality. Always search for new deals, do what you can, then move on without having an emotional need for a particular outcome. Quantity and persistence will get you the outcomes you need. One time I had a company for sale and I had only one buyer. I got too anxious about it because I only had one buyer. When a deal is meant to happen, it becomes easy. If it’s too hard, then back up and take a deep breath and look at all of your opportunities, not just one.
- Bad comments. On my blog I keep comments “on” because I like the discussions and sometimes arguments there. But someone put a racist comment on using some very negative language. I deleted it. He then wrote a negative review on Amazon complaining of my censorship. I don’t let things like that bother me. I’ve unsubscribed to the negative comments or emails anyone sends my way. I get them all day long, including from the people closest to me. Everything negative goes in my spam box. Particularly the people closest to me. Because they know my internal programming language. So I can’t let them mess with the program.
- Bacon. I have to do it. It’s the best food in the world. The gods on Mt Olympus only eat the crispiest, fattiest bacon. Mmmmm. But I’m at that age. I have to unsubscribe.
What will you unsubscribe to? Do some with me so I feel like I’m in solidarity with someone. In a few minutes I have a call to see if the above-mentioned deal will go through. In another few minutes I have to figure out breakfast. But no bacon. Unsubscribe.
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