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Advice & More February 2018

The Most Powerful Rule

By Geno Lawrenzi, Jr.

Proclaim your rarity. Don't follow the herd mentality. Dare to be different. Each person is a walking, talking miracle who, unfortunately, rarely reaches the heights that are possible within him.

Life does have its ups and downs, doesn't it?

A person can be on top one day with his dreams coming true and pockets full of cash. The sky is the limit. And then it all comes crashing down. What happened?

Although everyone experiences what I am talking about sooner or later, it seems to be especially true of gamblers. Anyone who has lived any length of time eventually comes up with certain rules he follows, a lifestyle philosophy that he tries to adhere to.

It all depends on our background and early life experiences, but we live and learn and make adjustments to the way we live in order to gain the maximum benefits from life.

I have always been a positive thinker. My daughter asks me, “Dad, how can you wake up so cheerful every morning. Don't you ever have a bad day?”

I respond, “Not on purpose. If I ever do, I don't want to show it.” And I generally don't.

It helps, of course, to surround yourself with positive people. As a journalist and magazine writer, I have had the opportunity to interview some of the world's most successful people – individuals whose golden touch won them fame and fortune that lie beyond the grasp of most individuals.

I met Og Mandino, probably the world's great motivational author of best-selling books, in Phoenix, Arizona, in the early 1980s. He was living in Paradise Valley, an affluent suburb of Phoenix. His next door neighbors included legendary track star Jesse Owens, syndicated newscaster Paul Harvey and insurance billionaire W. Clement Stone.

Mandino had worked as editor of Stone's nationally circulated magazine “Success Unlimited” while writing his books. He had also developed a taste for alcohol that turned into an addiction. Mandino eventually beat his alcoholism and went on to write huge best selling books like The Greatest Salesman in the World, The Greatest Secret in the World and my personal favorite The Greatest Miracle in the World.

Og believed in God. During one of our luncheons, he told me that automatic writing flowed through his writing regularly when he was at his typewriter. He said he would literally fall asleep at his typewriter and when he awoke, the writing would be there and he had no recollection of writing the wordsThat was how the “God Memorandum” was produced, he said.

The God Memorandum includes the four rules of life that I personally have adopted as my own. I have observed them closely for years. When I follow them, things turn out good for me. When I don't, I need healing. Boy, do I need healing.

Rule number one is: Count your blessings daily.

All people are blessed in one way or another and for us to operate at our optimum we need to appreciate those blessings on a daily basis. That gives us an optimism for living and builds good karma in our lives.

Rule number two: Go the extra mile, always.

How many times has a relative, friend or even a stranger approached us with an idea to improve our lives, whether physically, economically or spiritually, and we blew that person off with a comment like, “Let me think about it. I'll tell you later.”

Mandino took the position that if a person fails to go the extra mile, he cheats him of a possible opportunity that could lead to greatness in its many forms.

Rule number three is a personal favorite of mine: Proclaim your rarity. Don't follow the herd mentality. Dare to be different. Each person is a walking, talking miracle who, unfortunately, rarely reaches the heights that are possible within him. The ones who do proclaim their rarity are like laser beams reaching into outer space. Nobody is capable of estimating how far those beams will project.

Rule number four is the toughest one for most of us. If you are capable of following it and using it for your benefit, you are far ahead of the average person. Rule number four is “Use wisely your powers of choice.”

I was playing in a Texas Hold'em no-limit poker tournament not long ago and raised with A-K suited in hearts. The flop came A-3-7, with one heart. I came out betting and got two callers. A nine fell on fourth street and it was a heart. I increased my bet.

One player folded and the other went all in.


There I was with a pair of aces and four hearts. It was plainly obvious that the other player had me beat, either with trips or two pair. He had sufficient chips to put me all in. I knew I was beat. The question was simple: should I call or fold?

Hey, rule number four, are you listening?

I made the wrong choice. I called. I failed to pick up a second pair on fifth street and no heart fell. The player beat me with two pairs and knocked me out of the tournament.

Rule number four is the most powerful rule you will ever have in your arsenal of life's weapons.

Use it wisely and be a winner.


Geno Lawrenzi Jr. is an international journalist who has worked in many parts of the United States as well as the Caribbean on newspapers and magazines. Contact him at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

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