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  • Writer's pictureRobert Stevenson

Hardheaded Humanism


Robert Stevenson - Being Hardheaded does have a good side

I am a fan of L.S. Barksdale. He has been described by those who personally knew him as a man of superb intelligence, deep insight, and sincere compassion for his fellow human beings. Upon retiring after a very successful business career, he decided to become an expert in the field of self-esteem. His beliefs and writings were not wishful thinking, but more direct and to the point. One colleague described his writings as "hardheaded humanism."


Now, some people might look at “hardheaded” as being a negative term; but one definition for hardheaded is ...not easily moved or deceived; practical; shrewd. When you combine that definition of hardheaded with “humanism”, which are beliefs that stress the potential value and goodness of human beings, emphasize common human needs, and seek solely rational ways of solving human problems… you have quite a powerful narrative for what Mr. Barksdale stood for.


I thought I would share with you some of his beliefs, or should I say, “ACTION STATEMENTS,” he felt you should live by. Let these action statements serve as a guide to help you become more successful.


  • Do not procrastinate.

  • Analyze and benefit from your mistakes.

  • Allow yourself the freedom to make mistakes.

  • Do not let “feeling good” be dependent on others.

  • Motivate yourself in line with your chosen objectives.

  • Be frank and open with everyone, free of pretensions.

  • Be able to say “No,” even when it will displease others.

  • Stand up for your own values, opinions, and convictions.

  • Do not brag about what you have or what you have done.

  • Do not blame others for your mistakes, defeats or problems.

  • Don’t refrain from an endeavor because of the fear of failure.

  • Defer to no one on account of their wealth, power or prestige.

  • Do not deny your own needs, feeling and opinions to please others.

  • Do not let others talk you into things against your better judgement.

  • Make decisions promptly and be willing to accept the consequences.


I would like to throw in one more Action Statement made by that famous “Anonymous” person, who said: Live in such a way that if someone speaks badly of you – No one will believe it.

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