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Turn Setbacks into Greenbacks into Flapjacks

Willie Jolley thinks you're a loser.

It's true! The dynamic author, speaker, radio personality and "national media personality" has made a career out of coming up with inspirational responses to your business blunders, career collapses, goofs, gaffes and workplace boo-boos. As a national media personality myself, I feel that it's my duty to stand up for you. Sure, you're a loser and desperately need help, but that's no reason to subject you to an endless barrage of encouragement and optimism.

Positive thinking — that's what you get from Willie Jolley, the author of "A Setback is a Setup for a Comeback," "It Only Takes a Minute to Change Your Life," and now, Willie's latest attempt to turn your pathetic life around, "Turn Setbacks into Greenbacks."

Mr. Jolley is called "The Comeback King," but just because the king came back from a career setback — and just because he is making mega-greenbacks capitalizing on the setbacks that have occurred in our current financial crisis — there's no reason to think that a sad sack like you can be turned into a sack of gold.

Let's face facts. There is a difference between positive thinking and psychotic delusions.

But maybe I'm being too negative. Take my hand, and let's stroll through Jolley's latest press release and the book that comes with it.

The subtitle of "Turn Setbacks" is "7 Secrets for Going Up in Down Times," but before you get to the secrets you have to get through an extremely controversial prologue and preface. It takes these two opening acts for the author to unleash and explain his shocking conclusion that "money is important."

Chances are this opinion has already been brought home to you, perhaps by the friendly philosophers at American Express and Visa. As result, at this point in your life, you may not feel the need to spend $21.95 ($25.95 in Canada) to have someone discuss "Why is it Important to be Wealthy?"

Still, if you don't yet know that money is good, especially if it's your money, Willie is here to explain it to you. And Willie has "personally made millions of dollars and has had the opportunity to develop friendships with numerous millionaires and billionaires." [I assume Willie was able to convince these moguls that money was important. No one is more impressionable than a depressed billionaire.]

As for the seven steps, they are less about the way you work and more about the way you think. You need to "make up your mind," to "settle down and think up," to "change your input," to "make good choices" and to "fill yourself with the pure, the powerful and the positive." And that's just step one.

My favorite technique is to "speak positively into your life." You are advised to be like Willie and, when facing a setback, give yourself a mantra, such as "Do not worry! Remember, Willie, you are blessed and highly favored. All will be well." If you use this mantra, be sure to insert your own name, unless your name is Willie, and then you're good to go.

I like the mantra idea, but would suggest something a little more realistic, like "Do not worry. Remember, Willie, you are a big loser and highly likely to fail, but maybe someday, you'll catch a break, but it probably won't be now, because this time, you're really in the soup."

This mantra may not make you feel better, but it does have the advantage of reflecting reality. Think how happy you'll be if you prove to be wrong again, and things really do work out.

My favorite part of this book is Willie's story about the fate of some frogs that were submerged in a bucket of water. The frogs that had been rescued from a watery abyss the day before, managed to clamber out of the bucket. Frogs that had no such positive experience "drowned, because they had given up hope."

Outside of general creepiness of this anti-amphibian experiment, one wonders how Willie knows the frogs had given up hope? Maybe they were just suicidal frogs. Or frogs that had a death wish.

But let's think positive. Even if all Willie's tips and teachings can't turn your setbacks into greenbacks, now you know about a brand new career opportunity. And if you think positively, someone may pay you big bucks to drown frogs for popular inspirational speakers and authors. For the frogs, it's a setback, but for you, bub, it's greenbacks all the way.

Bob Goldman has been an advertising executive at a Fortune 500 company in the San Francisco Bay Area. He offers a virtual shoulder to cry on at bob@funnybusiness.com. To find out more about Bob Goldman, and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate web page at www.creators.com.


2 Responses »

  1. You hit the nail on the head! Willie Jolley: Another motivational speaker that needs you to buy his book so he can turn his "setbacks" into "greenbacks" by telling you what a loser you are!

  2. I heard Willie on the Tavis Smiley show on NPR on Saturday, 06/19/10 and it was more "happy talk". I used to like Tavis until Saturday. Tavis only asked him softball questions. The interview was pathetically worthless! All Fluff no substance.