Wednesday, September 7, 2022
Confidence is KING! Go in STRONG! You have to BELIEVE!
Tuesday, September 6, 2022
Wednesday, August 24, 2022
Sunday, August 21, 2022
"I'm rooting for Excellence."
Over the past few days, Toastmasters International, a 98 year old non-profit organization focused on building leadership and communication skills, held it's . I've been a member since 1999, and have competed in this particular contest numerous times, finishing as high as 3rd in the World in 2006, top 10 in 2008, and top 20 in 2002, 2007, and 2009.
As a coach, I've worked with many other contestants over the years, all of whom have reached various levels of success. As a 23 year Toastmaster, I've made friends with 1000s around the world - and many invariably end up competing at the highest levels of the contest.
All this to say this - I routinely get asked "who are you rooting for"?
My answer is always this -
Typically, excellence wins out, but I'm not just rooting for excellence to WIN, but for excellence across the board. Only one can win in a competition like this one, but all can show excellence in their performance, delivery, and/or content.
Rooting for excellence goes beyond Toastmasters, of course. When I can't root for my Iowa Hawkeyes, Colorado Avalanche & Rockies, or Denver Nuggets and beloved Broncos because they're out of contention, I root for excellence. For great games. For legendary performances. If nothing else, I root for outstanding efforts.
Competition which results in only one winner can be brutal. The old saying for those who come in second is that they are the 'first loser' (which makes no sense, because technically they are the LAST loser, but, whatever.) People forget who took second in most competitions. When was the last time you thought about Mondale or Dukakis? Losing in a winner takes all competition puts a beating on self-worth, momentum, and motivation. The focus goes to the result, instead of the journey.
Any journey, regardless of the result, can be excellent. Just ask Bill & Ted.
Tuesday, August 16, 2022
Thursday, August 11, 2022
Friday, August 5, 2022
Thursday, August 4, 2022
Tuesday, July 26, 2022
Despite common motivational wisdom, and often worldwide pressure, there's nothing wrong with giving up. We've all given up at one time or another, and we will all give up in the future. No, there's no clever turn coming up later in the article where I suggest giving up giving up. All I suggest is that you consider the following questions before you give up.
Monday, July 25, 2022
Monday, July 18, 2022
This weekend - we watched two movies - both picked by my 21 year old daughter who's staying over in between apartments, and house sitting jobs. I say this because she's at a prime age of figuring out 'who she is, and who she could become', and temporarily couch-surfing with her parents is a part of that journey.
Of course, as you might suspect, she wakes up in the body of her 30 year old self, spends the movie discovering that being who she thought she wanted to be wasn't so great, that Matty, who grows up to be a young Mark Ruffalo, is actually pretty awesome, and takes these life lessons back with her following another emotional scene involving magic glitter that returns her to her 13 year old self. A fun movie that my daughter said was 'transformational' when she watched it at 13. Last night, the pick was
Friday, July 15, 2022
Thursday, July 7, 2022
Wednesday, July 6, 2022
Monday, July 4, 2022
Sunday, June 26, 2022
If only never again was always our choice.
Wednesday, June 22, 2022
Tuesday, June 14, 2022
Thursday, June 9, 2022
Tuesday, June 7, 2022
Wednesday, June 1, 2022
Monday, May 30, 2022
Memorial Day is a Win Anyway day. Winning rarely comes without cost. Winning freedom never comes without cost. The higher the stakes, the higher the cost.
For those that lost their lives - I would never dare say they 'Won Anyway'. Neither would I say that about their friends and family who lost their sons and daughter, brothers and sisters, parents and grandparents. Even those who say 'it's not what happens to you, but what you do with it' have to stop short when a life is taken.
So today, we honor those who lost, who paid the cost, so we could win. My prayer is that somehow, some way, you are aware of what your sacrifice meant to the world, and that you know you are never forgotten.
To those who are remembering those you've lost, even the most positive among us know a loss is a loss. No matter how far away you get from that moment, no matter what you do with it going forward, what accomplishments, successes and victories that spring forth from that moment, that moment is always...a moment of loss. As you embrace it, we embrace you.
Be well today, and be seen. Your Win Anyway journey isn't easy - your victory may simply be getting out of bed, breathing in and out, and making it through the day. The pace of your journey might be months or years, but it's a journey worth taking. A journey those you've lost likely would want you to take.
When you're ready.
Tuesday, May 24, 2022
If you can dream it, you can DO it! - Disney
These, and a thousand more blindly positive platitudes float through our culture from well-meaning parents, teachers, preachers, speakers, and tacky posters in the hallways of companies around the world.
I'm guilty of repeating these quotes over the years - mostly to myself, in an effort to get myself going. My problem? I'm a realist. Pragmatist perhaps. Even a cynic, those close to me would say. My bigger problem? I'm a motivational speaker. Or, for those that hate that term (me among them - but it's the most general, recognizable term for the world), you can go with 'inspirational speaker' (but that offends non-spiritualists), or 'transformational speaker' (whatever that means), or even 'GIMP speaker' (which you might think is a crass term for disabled speakers like me, but actually stands for 'Great Inspirational & Motivational Presenters', or so my coach Tom told me after he came up with it).
People WANT motivation. NEED motivation. SEEK OUT motivation from books and music and speakers, and depending on our psychological makeup up, from exercise, food, and even sex.
Here's the problem - the motivation so many people think they want isn't motivation at all. It's a dopamine hit. A rush of energy that we are able to harness for varying lengths of time to help us work. That's not motivation. It's a drug hit.
The question you might be asking, and that I have asked myself many times, is "If you don't believe people can be motivated by others, why do you do what you do? What is 'WinAnyway' if not a motivational message?"
Thursday, May 19, 2022
Wednesday, May 18, 2022
Sunday, May 15, 2022
Finished 2 more books this week: Tools of the Titans, by Tim Ferriss, and All Business is Still Show Business by Scott McKain.
I'll continue to update, as well as go back through the year with reviews of earlier readings.