When John Mellencamp was just a kid starting to professionally play music he announced to his grandparents that he wouldn’t be going to church anymore.
“I’ve been to church and there’s nothing but a bunch of hypocrites in there,” he told them.
His Grandmother asked without missing a beat, “And there’s no hypocrites in the bars you play at every weekend?”
He told Brian Koppelman this story on The Moment podcast because it stuck with him. He even sang about it in, “Between a Laugh and a Tear,” when he said,
Hypocrite used to be such a big word to you / It doesn’t mean anything to you now
People are complicated. We’re all walking contradictions.
We have to reduce, pigeon hole, and niche-down to get our points across.
But, we also have to remember the reductions, one-size-fits-all-ing, and broad categorizations only define aspects of who and what our values are.
Know what matters and why. Then go wherever your people are. Hypocrisy and confusion are all part of another day at the office. Let the core values be consistent. Go from there.