Friday, May 29, 2015

Find Your Muse, Not Your Machiavelli

Famous posthumous portrait of Niccolò Machiave...
Famous posthumous portrait of Niccolò Machiavelli (1469-1527). (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Everybody needs someone to inspire them. These days, I'm inspired by my best friend Morena and my buddy Tony. Morena is my muse. She's such a creative and exciting woman: bright, beautiful with every gift imaginable for a man to love. She is my partner in business and my best friend since college.

Tony, on the other hand, is more like Machiavelli. That man can manipulate a situation like nobody I've seen in quite some time. He inspires me when it comes to women but only to a point. That's why he's my buddy but not my friend because you can never fully trust the Machiavellis out there. You are cautious of the Machiavellis in your life but you never trust them and in some case, do the complete opposite. Tony is truly inspiring, though.

A brief history lesson on Machiavelli. His name is synonymous with manipulation, especially political and business manipulation. His book the Prince is read by every cut throat business person I know, along with Napoleon Hill's Think and Grow Rich, Sun Zu's the Art of War, and more recently, the Robert Greene trilogy about power, war, and seduction.

What people tend to forget is that while Machiavelli was good at manipulation, he wasn't great. Machiavelli came to power in Florence, Italy during the renaissance, just after the Medici family were chased out of town. Machiavelli hit his stride during the rule of the Borgias (yes, they did exist and they're not just some made up characters for a television series) where they taught him about how power gets thrown around.

Unfortunately, he learned these rules too late. The Medici came back into power. Machiavelli was labeled a traitor, tortured, imprisoned, and later exiled. It was during this time that he wrote the Prince. Therefore, when you read it, think of it more as a "damn, I should have done that" as opposed to "this is what I did".

Always find a muse, who will inspire you to do great things and bring out the best in you. Don't completely follow the Machiavellis. Rather, learn from them. Watch their movements. Pick up on things you can use but never completely trust them. Now you know and knowing is half the battle (hum the GI Joe theme song now).

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