Where it All Began

by Wayne Sharer

International speaker, author, and entrepreneur. Retired navy officer, former commanding officer. Over 35 years of leading, coaching, mentoring, and speaking.

May 16, 2010

My first life story post, I told you to be warned, I’m very direct.

So, if you’ve been reading anything I’ve written here, you probably already know what I mean.

I think “point blank” is good.  What do you think?

So, why am I such character with such a lack of “tip toe” talking?

It all starts in the beginning.

I was born in Washington, D.C. and my parents, both grew up in D.C.  My grandparents all ended up here mostly as a result of hard times.  D.C. is typically a recession resistant city, in a sense.  It’s because liberal governments come in and make a bunch of bogus jobs that could be better performed in the private sector…

…They do this to try to move us toward socialism and total government control of every service.

Good news, they haven’t won, and they won’t.

Back to the beginning…

My parents were pretty strict.  There was no messing around, and getting away with it.  They didn’t let us 7 kids run around like animals, and say, “Oh, aren’t they so cute,” or stupid responses like that – which many parents these days use to ignore disciplining their kids.

That didn’t happen in our little duplex home of a HUGE 980 square feet, where 9 people had to share their existence.  Figure it out yourself, that gave each person the equivalent space of about 9.5 square feet each.  Imagine growing up with only 9.5 sq feet to yourself.  In fact, with a kitchen, living room and 3 bedrooms, no one in our house ever really had 9.5 sq feet to themselves.

We all made due with very little.  My mom worked all day long keeping us under control, and having one of us after another over a period of 10 years.

My dad worked 2 jobs through that time, and barely made enough to pay for the mortgage, the car, the food, and the drinking.

So life wasn’t miserable, nor was it  a bouquet of roses.  We didn’t have snacks, we didn’t have coca-cola sitting in the house all the time.  Sometimes we ate cereal for dinner, and breakfast.  Steak was a major luxury, and eating out at any cheap restaurant rarely happened.

My dad made it very important to me to get good grades and go to college.  He did it by threatening me, and whipping me good when I didn’t do good, and punishing me for any school grade he considered unsatisfactory – that was any grade less than an “A.”

He forced responsibility on us, and we learned to take care of ourselves.  We made our own lunches for school, and we did our own laundry when we were old enough to reach on top of the machines.  We made our own money to survive.

The rules were simple.  We kids had to do what he said as long as we didn’t pay rent.  When we started paying for things, then we could do what we wanted (with limits, of course).  It was a no BS house, and we weren’t taught how to kiss ass like the corporate schmoozers that inundate the big companies and government (also a big company!).

The result of all of this was me.  A fiercely independent, self-reliant person, who doesn’t blame other people for what goes wrong, and never gives up on achieving my next goal.

I don’t really like big houses, and I don’t really get any thrills from expensive cars.  So you don’t see me talking about stuff like that, because — well — I don’t care about that!

I care about succeeding in a way that can help as many people as possible not have to live the hard live of my parents, and the almost as difficult live that I had.  Big cars, and big houses aren’t the solution to that. ..

Creating useful tools, and providing useful guidance are the solution to that.  Teaching people self-respect, and self-importance is key.  Showing them confidence and perseverance is another big part.

Finally, generating enough profits to build community support centers that teach the underprivileged, and doesn’t  just throw money at them with no direction.  I want to change lives, not leave them stuck where they are.

So that’s it for now.  That’s the beginnings.

Check back again soon for more.

– Wayne Sharer

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