shares some thoughts about keeping in your own lane.
Last month I ventured out to the Sydney Cricket Ground to watch the Ashes with Dad and, while I love watching Test cricket and spending time with my old man, during the four-thousandth over when the novelty of being there was wearing a little thin and I’d finished perving on Mitchell Starc, my mind began to wander.
I got to thinking about the three things that make us Australians uniquely Australian.
Number one: the right to tell Alan Joyce how to run Qantas.
Two: the unwavering belief that every Australian could run a TV network because we all know best what people want to watch.
And three: we are all more knowledgeable than the experts when it comes to picking the Australian cricket team.
Go to any backyard barbie and you find at least 12 experts on all of the above.
It’s our God-given right to lecture on these topics as hardworking, tax-paying, croc-wrestling Australians.
Then I got to thinking how everyone’s got an opinion on everything these days.
Then I got annoyed, so I stopped thinking and started watching the cricket again. Then I got bored again, and returned to the know-it-alls. There’s so much going on these days and we are literally being invited into other people’s business courtesy of social media. Oscar Wilde once mused, “My own business always bores me to death, I prefer other people’s.” But then old Occy didn’t have to contend with a steady stream of bikini-clad models on Instagram. Because it’s in our DNA to look over our neighbour’s back fence and, once armed with others’ business, have an opinion on it and inevitably start to compare yourself. While it’s fine to admire others and be influenced and motivated by them, too much looking and knowing and comparing is making us unhappy. So, I thought it might be a good time to share with you a very handy piece of advice I was given a few years ago (when it seemed every second person had an opinion on me – insert eye-rolling emoji here), which might help you get through 2018. It’s simply to Stay In Your Lane. The Urban Dictionary describes it as “what you say to someone who tries to talk about a sector they are not an expert in.” Now, I realise that as a journalist hosting 20 hours of live TV a week, I regularly, and with great gusto, talk about things I am not expert in.
So I ask you to bear with me here for we are all works in progress…
I may well tell the Australian cricket selectors how to pick the team (as is my God-given right), but I’d never dream of opining on marriage, babies, nappies or breastfeeding (these topics are such war zones, even if I had been through them, I wouldn’t offer an opinion) and I always leave the finance chat to Kochie. Life can be a lot simpler when you stay in your lane.
It can be liberating and you won’t get pulled into other people’s dramas.
Hell, if you want more chaos in your life, come and work in TV.
Also, most importantly, staying in your own lane won’t make you sound like an idiot. Of course, staying in your lane means you won’t swim into the ropes, which brings me to our national swimming team.
If anyone needs me, I’ll be giving my two cents’ worth to our Commonwealth Games selectors…
“It is in our DNA to inevitably have an opinion on other people’s business”