I’m halfway through reading Shattered: Inside Hillary Clinton’s Doomed Campaign. The “doomed” theme hangs over every chapter as the authors share story after story about a deeply flawed candidate running an equally flawed campaign.
But here’s the thing: Clinton’s margin of defeat was paper-thin. She lost Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin by a total of 79,000 votes, less than 1% of the popular vote in each of those states. Any number of factors (think James Comey’s controversial email announcement) could have easily swung the election in Clinton’s favor.
If a tiny slice of the electorate had pulled the other lever, the authors would have written an entirely different book. Even though 99.9% of the objective facts would be the same, Clinton’s campaign would be cast in terms of destiny rather than doom.
I discussed this idea in a recent Mind Mint, but it’s worth restating: every story can be told in multiple ways. As authors of our own stories – the endings of which are not yet decided – we get to choose which events and themes get highlighted. Let’s make the bold choices that move us toward living our best lives.
Fun fact: the authors of Shattered planned to use that title whether Clinton won or lost. It was either going to be about shattering the glass ceiling or a shattered campaign.