Grow a Pair

Summary Written by Patti Pokorchak

The Big Idea

Control YOUR World, not THE World!

"When I grew a pair, the way the world is didn’t bother me nearly as much because I was suddenly in control. I was not in control of the world (damn it!) but I was in control of my world."- Grow a Pair, page 46

Ideally, we’d all like to change the world. But we can’t. We can only change ourselves. And it is hard to change ourselves, never mind what those ‘motivational bozos’ say. We can do it one little bit at a time. For us to change ourselves is a gradual process, not something sudden nor big. No matter how much we’d like to be different, it takes time.

It’s not rocket science or anything difficult to understand, but many people sure do have a problem standing up for themselves. If you are one of the sheeple out there (people who accept the beliefs or opinions of others, without any critical analysis or thoughts of their own), Winget advises to stop being one and think for yourself.

Winget’s Have-a-Pair Hall of Fame includes Elvis, Rocky, John Wayne, Maggie Thatcher and of course, Larry himself. Larry encourages you to make a list of people who, in your opinion, have a pair. Next to their names, write down what it is about them that causes you to admire them. The next step is for you to consider how you can take this list of attributes and develop them in your own life.

Bottom line, Winget wants you to stand up straight, live boldly and not let others walk all over you. He wants you to be in charge of your life, and he wants you to do so without being a jerk, He wants you to fail, then get back up, and get at it again until you succeed.

Insight #1

Believe in yourself, not others!

"Don’t be a follower of the ideas of any individual, group, party, church or other movement. Instead, you should read, study, think and work. Rely on your brain and your brawn to create the life you want. In other words: Grow a pair!"- Grow a Pair, page 19

Winget states that we have become a society of weenies. He asks you a list of questions to determine if you have a pair, such as:

  • Do you accept bad service without speaking up?
  • Do your kids talk back to you?
  • Do you allow people to take advantage of you?
  • Do people talk down to you?
  • Do you ever feel that people don’t respect you?

He then answers the question “where did everyone’s pair go?” He states that one of the most castrating effects on our society, with our lack of having a pair, is political correctness.

His examples of being too politically correct include Santa Clauses in Sydney, Australia who were forced to revolt for the right to say ‘Ho, ho, ho’, the traditional laugh of Santa. We’re all familiar with people being ‘challenged’ these days as being called ‘vertically challenged’ for short people, ‘mobility challenged’ if they can’t walk well and ‘behaviorally challenged’ which is a criminal, or ‘truth challenged’ which means you’re a liar!

He then shares how you can ‘grow a pair’, (a phrase that gets repeated often and becomes a bit tiresome by the end of the book). He discusses growing a pair at home, with your kids, with your friends, in your business, your money, and while being a citizen and customer. You start growing a pair by speaking up. You stop using weak language – no more “I think” or “in my humble opinion”. You learn to speak well and get to the point. You ask for what you want and stop apologizing.

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Insight #2

It’s all about Personal Responsibility!

"People who have a pair don’t offer up excuses or explanations. They face the facts, take responsibility, and deal with the consequences. And they don’t put up with any of this crap!"- Grow a Pair, page 10

Speak up, be judgmental, have an opinion, be decisive, be honest, never make excuses, don’t whine, walk away, ask for what you want, get to the point, and stop apologizing if you’ve done nothing wrong.

Having a pair does NOT mean being rude, obnoxious, loud, arrogant, self-centered, mean or overly aggressive. The benefits of growing a pair include more success, better service, better kids, better friends, more confidence, more money, more happiness and great satisfaction with yourself and your accomplishments.

The side effects of having a pair can be that you can be criticized, called names like mean, a bully and a pain in the ass. But don’t let all that bother you – if you have a pair, it won’t.

Like his other books, this book provides straight advice that may irk some people, and Winget doesn’t care in the least if he does. In fact, he hopes it will. He hopes that those who get their feathers ruffled wake up to their problems and start acting on the suggestions contained within these 150+ short pages.

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Larry Winget

Larry Winget (Paradise Valley, AZ) is known as “The Pit Bull of Personal Development.” Larry is one of the most successful speaking professionals in the country today and the author of five bestselling books with in-your-face titles like Shut Up, Stop Whining, and Get a Life; It’s Called WORK for a Reason; You’re Broke Because You Want to Be; People are Idiots and I Can Prove It and Your Kids are Your Own Fault. Larry teaches universal principles that work for anyone, in any business, at any time, and does it through simple examples, understandable, easy-to-implement ideas.

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