Although we don’t know the result of the Presidential election, one thing is for certain. There are going to be a large number of people who are disappointed by the result. And from all the predictions and Red Flags, they are going to be more than disappointed.

Here’s a challenge for you and feel free to react and respond in any way you choose.

Do you agree or disagree with the following?

The measure of mental toughness and emotional maturity is not just how deeply you can feel disappointed, but how deeply you can feel outraged without becoming enraged and doing something destructive to others, yourself or your future.

This is not to be confused with acting weak, passive or what some people might call being a wuss. It’s being unflappable, quietly indomitable and present.

Why do that when you would feel so much more relief to punch back or at least scream and vent?

And besides, doesn’t the squeaky wheel get the grease?

Maybe so, and beyond that the screeching wheel may even get its way once, but it will not be trusted and be avoided like the plague in the future.

Also consider this. If and when you scream your upset at others, you’re telling people they’d better listen to you and do what you say or else. Again, you might intimidate people into doing this once or possibly a few times, but you’re also taking away any desire and motivation from people to do what you want them to do in the future, not to mention triggering resentment which will further demotivate them from going along with you.

What’s a better alternative?

Check out this quote:

Aggression plus mission equals conviction; Aggression minus mission equals hostility.

What does that mean?

When you can identify a mission that you are committed to that is not self-serving, but serves others and someone tries to undermine it, you can become emboldened by it and speak with power and conviction and you can stand up to anyone who would derail it.

For instance, here is an example of aggression plus mission equaling conviction. If I won the election as President it’s something I might say in my comments to all Americans. And I wouldn’t wait until the Inauguration, I would say it as soon as I was elected.

I understand many of you didn’t vote for me and are not just disappointed with my being elected, but angry and agitated.

That said, would you agree with the following?

A skeptic is someone who is reluctant to trust and believe; a cynic is someone who refuses to trust and believe. A skeptic is someone who once believed and was disappointed; a cynic is someone who once believed and was deceived. However, deep inside all skeptics and most cynics is a deep ache to trust and believe again without the fear of being disappointed or deceived.

Why is that?

Because trusting and believing in nothing and nobody may keep you from feeling disappointed or deceived, but is also prevents you from feeling hopeful and will instead often lead to a life where at the end you’re bitter instead of satisfied.

Knowing all of the above, I commit to you that I will do any and everything in my power to bring about a present and a future where you can feel trust, confidence, safe and hopeful.

Furthermore, I will do everything in my power to stand up to and stop anyone that seeks to undermine that mission and this commitment to you. And if I do anything other than that, I want you to come after me and hold me accountable.”

Can you hear the aggression, mission and conviction in that?


  • Mark Goulston, M.D.

    Author, speaker, podcast host, psychiatrist

    Dr. Mark Goulston is the inventor and developer of Surgical Empathy an approach that helps people to break their attachments to counterproductive modes of functioning and frees them to connect with more productive and healthier alternatives. He is the host of the “My Wakeup Call” podcast where he interviews people on the wakeup calls that changed who they are and made them better human beings and at being human and the host of the LinkedIn Live show, "No Strings Attached." He is a Founding Member of the Newsweek Expert Forum. He is one of the world’s foremost experts on deep listening, radical empathy and real influence with his book, “Just Listen,” becoming the top book on listening in the world, translated into twenty languages and a topic he speaks and teaches globally. He is an advisor, coach, mentor and confidante to CEO’s, founders and entrepreneurs helping them to unlock all their internal blocks to achieving success, fulfillment and happiness. Originally a UCLA professor of psychiatry and crisis psychiatrist for over 25 years, and former FBI and police hostage negotiation trainer, Dr. Goulston's expertise has been forged and proven in the crucible of real-life, high stakes situations including being a boots on the ground suicide prevention specialist and serving as an advisor in the OJ Simpson criminal trial. Including, “Just Listen,” he is the author or co-author of nine books with multiple best sellers. He writes or contributes to Harvard Business Review, Business Insider, Biz Journals, Fast Company, Huffington Post, Psychology Today and has appeared as an psychological expert in the media including: CNN, Headline News, msNBC, Fox News, Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Forbes, Fortune, Psychology Today and was the subject of a PBS special. He lives with his wife in Los Angeles, California.