The Wisdom of Opposite George

“If every instinct you have is wrong, then the opposite would have to be right” – Jerry Seinfeld on the creation of “Opposite George.” (1:50)

That line is SO profound on so many levels.

If you haven’t watched the clip in its entirety, take 6 minutes to do so now!

Chances are, you’re probably somewhat familiar with the Seinfeld television series (or, in my case, have seen every episode at least 50 times!)

It was my favorite in the 1990′s. A time when I was in my 20′s, working in Harrisburg on-air radio sales for low wages, and dreaming of a “better” way of living when I would “grow up.”

But back to “Opposite George.” Here’s the premise of this episode. Jerry Seinfeld is the successful comedian who has money, looks, humor, relationships, etc. The “good” life. His best friend George Costanza: broke, unattractive, not funny, lonely, and living with his parents! In a moment of clarity, George decides he’s going to “change his life” by doing the “opposite” of what he “naturally” thinks.

I can’t believe I’m about to share this, but here it goes. In 1997, I was George Costanza! LOL (Insert clip moment at 1:30) At age 27, I was balding, with no job, with no money, and I was living with my parents! Obviously MY way of thinking was NOT WORKING. So … yeah … I was open to a whole new way of thinking.

15 years later, THAT’S the critical distinction that Melissa and I continue to share with our team when they join our business. People join our team because they want to: increase their income, create more free time in their day, live in a better house and/or neighborhood, etc.

We’ve seen it over and over. The ones who succeed are the ones who decide to turn in their “old” thinking for a “new” way of thinking. The first step is to admit that something in that new associate’s life is not working. It will require change and a NEW way of thinking in order to go from Point A to Point B.

There will be resistance. From family, friends, co-workers. Sometimes, even one’s spouse!

For me at age 27, I found myself wanting so much more in life, but I was so consumed by my job. I was was spending every waking hour thinking about how to make more sales for my radio station and generate 15% commissions. (Incredibly generous, at the time, I thought!)

I thought it was the radio station and the city. So I moved from Harrisburg to Philadelphia … and started a new radio career. Same results though. Still consumed with thoughts on how to hit my quotas, leaving little time for my desires and dreams.

Around this time, I picked up some great advice from the Tony Robbins Personal Power II CD Series: “Write down what you want.” It was THAT simple. Write down what you want. And then expand on it. Detail it vividly to create emotion. How will it feel having that situation/thing/etc.? When will that be? (You must create a date of acquisition).

Tony Robbins Personal Power II

And then, take immediate action. Even if you’re not ready. The truth is, there’s always a “reason” to wait. Leaders take immediate action and make “course corrections” along the way. So get after it.

Which is exactly what I did.

So what was the “big change” I wanted most when I was sick and tired of being sick and tired?

To meet my ideal woman. Attractive, entrepreneurial, spiritual, full of life, with a desire to have children.

A few months later, Melissa shows up in my life. With a thriving at-home business, great energy, and a strong desire to find someone who’d share those values with her.

kevinandmelissa tbt

We’ll have to dive into that story a bit more in the future.

Right now, this day belongs to “Opposite George.” He was able to go from unemployed and living with his parents … to becoming the Ass’t to the Traveling Secretary for the New York Yankees and getting his own dream apartment!

It’s just a decision, folks. If life’s not working for you so far based on your “best thinking” up to this point, then may we recommend “doing the opposite?”

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14 Responses

  1. Mike says:

    George! What a great post, I feel that way about things. We should all do the opposite of what we normally would do. Great post!!

    • Kevin Knecht says:

      Thank you, Mike. “Opposite” George quickly gave me hope when I, too, was unemployed and living with my parents in my mid 20’s! LOL

  2. Gail Kendig says:

    I love Anthony Robbins but am finding that most of his past teachings have been taken straight from Napoleon Hill..amazing isn’t it? I went throughout this entire series myself and found it incredibly empowering! Thanks for the reminder of these extremely helpful tools!

  3. I love opposite day! Thanks so much for the laugh. Totally doing this everyday!

  4. Jason Hodge says:

    LOL!!! This was one of my all time favorite Seinfelds Kevin! Loved the Seinfeld franchise!

    This episode, albeit hilarious, had a lot of meat to the storyline, and a metaphor to life…

    A.P.A. – “Always Pay Attention” to what’s going on in your world…

    You may have to totally flip the script to make things work how they’re supposed to…

    It may sound counter-intuitive, but if what you’ve been getting is based on what you’ve been thinking and doing, and you don’t like the results… Maybe ‘The Opposite George’ approach is in order…

    Great post!

    • Kevin Knecht says:

      Thank you, Jason! Seinfeld was especially great for me because I was single during most of its “run!” LOL I only wish I had acted on Opposite George’s instincts sooner!

  5. Chad Gefroh says:

    Very good post! Love the analogy. I am a huge Seinfeld fan and often practice “opposite George” thinking myself!

  6. Lawrence Tam says:

    gotta love it when George can speak his mind and go “OPPOSITE” of what he normally does… cause history says… he’s naturally inclined to choose unwisely…

    so the opposite makes sense!

    • Kevin Knecht says:

      I knew there was a reason why I so relate to the great Lawrence Tam!! LOL I guess the advice is working for us, right?

      You’re a retired engineer.

      I’m a retired radio advertising sales guy.

      Good thing we did the “opposite” of what we were told! 🙂

  7. Alex Thielens says:

    Wonderful! The right clip at the right moment with the right conclusion. Definitely one of your best!

    • Kevin Knecht says:

      Alex! Thank you for the kind words! 🙂 The next time I’m back in Philly perhaps we can have a “Seinfeld” marathon together and experience more of the good life! LOL

  8. Alexander Bender says:

    I love this Kev. Huge Seinfeld fan & I can resonate with this fully – Tony Robbins & a whole truck load of Personal Development has led me to turn things around to doing the opposite of what I used to do.
    Awesome post Kev – see you in 3 weeks!

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