Men need rules. They don’t just need rules, men kind of want them. They’ll complain about the rules but deep down men like knowing what to do in a situation. There’s a sense of security in knowing if “x” happens, do “y”. A man doesn’t have to think, he just does what the rules say.
So I’ve come up with 11 rules for living like a Southern Gentleman:
1. Love God and Love others
2. Measure Twice, Cut Once
3. Spend less than your earn
This rule for handling money goes all the way back to Reconstruction. The Civil Way destroyed the southern economy, so cash and credit were in tight supply. Southerners had to figure out how to survive without either.
That all changed during the last 20 years. Now you can get a Visa with a $15,ooo credit limit just by clicking a box. So before you click “accept” on that Visa application remember, nobody ever had to file bankruptcy following this rule.
4. Treat others the way you want to be treated
5. Take Care of Your Stuff
One day I was helping a buddy get his boat ready to go fishing. He didn’t just check to be sure he had gas and the plug was in. He walked around his boat like a pilot walking around an airplane before take-off. It was not a quick task. Just when I thought we were going to leave, he noticed some fishing line had gotten wrapped around the prop shaft. Instead of saying he’d take care of it next time, he took the 10 minutes to remove it. When his girlfriend complained about how long it was taking he said “I ain’t got much but I try to take care of what I do have.”
6. Remember, S&*^ Happens
You better have a sense of humor or this world will chew up and spit you out. Sometimes all you can do is laugh.
7. Pass it On
Don’t hoard what you’ve learned. You worked too hard getting it to keep it to yourself. Pass it on to whoever wants to learn.
8. Trust, But Verify
Southerners enjoy doing business with people they like. But always remember, just because you like somebody doesn’t mean you shouldn’t verify what they said. Don’t worry, this will not offend an honest man.
9. Count the cost
Don’t just dive into building a house, starting a business or getting married. You need to have a plan. Coach Bryant put it this way, “Have plan. Work your plan. Plan for the unexpected.”
10. It is what it is
Embrace reality. You can’t fix it until you face it.