I’ve lived in Wyoming now for a bit over a decade. I’ve come to see and learn that the value of rugged individualism is quite prominent in this state. (Rugged Individualism Definition: the virtuous ideal where an individual is totally self-reliant and independent from outside assistance.) In my use of this term, I am not referring to the originating political views around the term, but rather am solely addressing the personal adoption of the philosophy in one’s life.
Roots in the Wild Wild West
The adoption of this philosophy in the wild west makes sense in a lot of ways! Wyoming is often still seen as a frontier state, as it has more antelope than people and is the least populous state in the nation. It’s history is rooted in cowboys and ranchers doing hard work, and many of those ranches are still running today, with generations learning how to sustain their ranches. I’m not an expert on ranching, but I know that they take at least a handful of people to ban together to maintain the animals and the land but ranches aren’t close to towns and there is a lot of hard work done.
An author has even captured the heart of the cowboy values through a book called “Cowboy Ethics“. Here are the ethics he talks about that cowboys maintain and that are good ethics for us all to adopt, even those on wall street: