To invest successfully over a lifetime does not require a stratospheric IQ, unusual business insights, or inside information. What's needed is a sound intellectual framework for making decisions and the ability to keep emotions from corroding that framework. You must supply the emotional discipline.
Air pollution is a threat to health, especially of older persons. It contributes significantly to the rising rates of chronic respiratory ailments. It stains our cities and towns with ugliness, soiling and corroding whatever it touches. Its damage extends to our forests and farmlands as well. The economic toll for our neglect amounts to billions of dollars each year.
Lyndon B. Johnson
I get the sense that some people think that influence dilutes - that the more you are someone else, the less you are yourself, as if you were born with some innate distinct youness that is gradually sanded away by the corroding forces of conformity. That if you could somehow tune everything else out and really dig deep within yourself, you'd find your voice there, pure and independent. That's bullshit. Your voice isn't there, already made. You need to make your own voice. You need to make your own voice.
What made Leonardo da Vinci, Thomas Edison, and Albert Einstein such creative geniuses? It wasn't reading books or watching YouTube talks about How To Be More Creative, that's for sure ... If startling insights could be systematically arrived at, they wouldn't be startling. The best you can do is to create a conducive environment: put in the hours; take time to daydream; avoid mind-corroding substances.
I'll burn myself, or I'll cut myself. For a burn or a cut might be shown, might be nursed, might scar or heal, would be a miserable kind of emblem; would anyway be there, on the surface of her body, rather than corroding it from within. Now the thought came to her again, that she might scar herself in some way. It came, like the solution to a problem: I won't be doing it like some hysterical girl. I won't be hoping she'll come catch me at it. It won't be like lying on the sitting-room floor. I'll be doing it for myself, as a secret.
Gormenghast. Withdrawn and ruinous it broods in umbra: the immemorial masonry: the towers, the tracts. Is all corroding? No. Through an avenue of spires a zephyr floats; a bird whistles; a freshet beats away from a choked river. Deep in a fist of stone a doll's hand wriggles, warm rebellious on the frozen palm. A shadow shifts its length. A spider stirs... And darkness winds between the characters. - Gormenghast
I have reared a memorial more enduring than brass, and loftier than the regal structure of the pyramids, which neither the corroding shower nor the powerless north wind can destroy; no, not even unending years nor the flight of time itself. I shall not entirely die. The greater part of me shall escape oblivion.[Lat., Exegi monumentum aera perenniusRegalique situ pyramidum altius,Quod non imber edax, non Aquilo impotensPossit diruere aut innumerabilisAnnorum series et fuga temporum.Non omnis moriar, multaque pars meiVitabit Libitinam.]
Or why should one refrain from burning hatred, whatever its basis-race, class, or ideology? Such hatred is in fact corroding many hearts today. Atheist teachers in the West are bringing up a younger generation in a spirit of hatred of their own society. Amid all the vituperation we forget that the defects of capitalism represent the basic flaws of human nature, allowed unlimited freedom together with the various human rights; we forget that under Communism (and Communism is breathing down the neck of all moderate forms of socialism, which are unstable) the identical flaws run riot in any person with the least degree of authority; while everyone else under that system does indeed attain 'equality'-the equality of destitute slaves. This eager fanning of the flames of hatred is becoming the mark of today's free world. Indeed, the broader the personal freedoms are, the higher the level of prosperity or even of abundance-the more vehement, paradoxically, does this blind hatred become. The contemporary developed West thus demonstrates by its own example that human salvation can be found neither in the profusion of material goods nor in merely making money.