How Jerry Seinfeld Helped to Reset my Mindset

60 Minutes presented an interview with Jerry Seinfeld on Sunday, and it was great. 

Here’s the link to the video

Seinfeld said so many funny, profound, and wise things. I’ve rewatched it three times. 

And now I’m sharing some of the highlights. 

Asked if Covid has killed New York, he scoffed and said:

“When you were a kid, remember kicking over the ant hill? That’s what just happened to us. They just kicked over the whole ant hill. And what do the ants do? (They say…) ‘alright, hand me the next crumb. Let’s get back to work.’”

Perseverance. Good plan.

Asked if his parents were funny, Seinfeld replied, “Yes, my dad, particularly. Wildly funny.”

So now we’re waiting for something wildly funny and Seinfeld shared this: 

“Like there’d be a fly land on your soup and somebody would go, ‘Ooooh,’ and he would go, ‘How much can he eat?’” 

I’ve always loved the old-school “fly in the soup” jokes (Q: “Waiter, what’s this fly doing in my soup!?” A: “Hmmm. It looks like the backstroke.”). 

And I especially loved how this generation’s most successful comedian dropped a “fly-in-the-soup” joke on 60 Minutes. 

But here’s what I liked best: The life lessons in that silly joke. Seriously…I’m about to draw some profound wisdom from a fly-in-the-soup joke… 

On occasion, we all freak out over the figurative fly in the soup. 

But really, is it such a big deal? 

Who actually believes that fly will contaminate our food and poison us? 

Does anyone know a person who died — or even who got sick — because they ate the soup after a fly landed on it? 

Of course, no one worries that the fly will consume ALL the soup…

…which is why, “How much can he eat?” is ironic and funny.Why is it wise and profound? Because it unmasks a truth about us. And there’s a moral to the story: 

We sweat the small things. We let the fly on the soup distract us from a perfectly good meal. We allow something that is no big deal to become a BIG disruption…

…and so we get stuck…

…during our meal…

…or in a relationship…

…or in our business…

…or in life. 

I’m glad Jerry retold his father’s fly-in-the-soup joke because it reminds me to slow down and ask, “Is this really as big a deal as I’m making it? Is the fly going to poison me or eat all the soup?”

Usually, the answer is no.

p.s. If you’re on LinkedIn, please connect with me. I’ll be posting unique content there that you won’t receive by email — all for the same purpose: To help you power up your stories so you can attract leads, keep them tuned in and inspire them to act. 

You’ll find me here: 

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Tom Ruwitch

Tom Ruwitch is the founder and CEO of Story Power Marketing. For more than 30 years, he has helped businesses grow by delivering powerful stories using a variety of different media.