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Archive for the ‘On Success’ Category

I found this on Facebook today and I thought it worth memorializing for Reese & Finn in perpetuity:

We all want to be successful, but we don’t want to face what’s holding us back. Many of us ignore blind spots, only to fall prey to our shortcomings down the line. So how can we trim the fat, cut our faults to the bone, and get into the habit of success?

Here are 10 toxic habits you need to destroy to allow success to find you:

1. Idolizing those who have already done it.

We all need people to learn from. My concern kicks in when leaders of industry take on a near deity status. I have a huge amount of respect for many of them, but they’re not you. Nobody is living your journey.

Use their experience to help guide you, but nobody has the same path to success. Success has indicators and certain certain patterns, but use the pieces that apply to you and dispel the rest.

2. Comparing yourself to peers.

This past weekend I visited a friend’s summer home. It was larger than my full-time residence. I joked with his wife that I want to be happy for them, but there’s this small part of me that hates them. So, I get it. We all want to have what we don’t have. But there is a time when you need to let go of comparison.

Take that energy and focus on how you can improve your performance as it compares to itself.

3. Rationalizing not trying.

Nothing is worse than saying “if only.” Things are the way they are. Define what you want to change, and go about changing it. If you can’t leave your job because you have to pay your mortgage, I get it. But don’t complain you want to start a business, and say “I wish.”

No more wishing. Stop watching Netflix, or golfing, or going to the Yankees game, and use that time to build your business and break free. Or just shut up about it.

4. Feeding a low opinion of yourself.

I’ve met people who’ve been in one job for years and think they’re destined to be miserable in that role forever. You have the capacity to learn a new skill, and you can jump industries. It will be difficult, but what happens if you never try?

Shake off the fear of the unknown, dispel your self-limiting belief that hugely successful people are more talented than you. They’re just a bit more obsessed.

Become obsessed and make power moves that nobody expects.

5. Pointing fingers.

Nobody is responsible for your good or bad fortune except you. Nobody. Deal with it.

6. Judging others.

Rich people aren’t necessarily entitled. Many of them worked their butts off for what they have. Poor people aren’t lazy, they just don’t know any better, and are stuck.

Get past your judgments, and move forward.

7. Needing to have all the answers.

When confronted with a hard question, the best thing you can say is “I don’t know.” Then go find the answer. You don’t have all the answers, but if you’re smart enough to surround yourself with motivated people who support you, you’ll get the right answer eventually.

8. Seeking perfection.

You will break some eggs on your road to success. Nothing will ever be perfect.

You can strive for greatness, but you can’t lament when you miss the mark.

9. Prioritizing comfort.

Throughout your journey, you will be uncomfortable. You will feel insecure. You will feel self-doubt. You may even feel panicked. Get used to that feeling and keep moving.

Discomfort won’t kill you. But succumbing to self-pity will.

10. Waiting.

There is never a perfect time to start a business, sell a business, or move to the next challenge in your career.

If you feel the need, take the first step. Right now.

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This morning the family and I ventured south to Seward Park for the kids’ third Seafair Kids Triathlon.

It was a memorable morning, but not necessarily for the best reasons.

Things got off on the wrong foot.  No sooner had we parked at Seward Park than I realized I had forgotten the kids’ bike helmets.  I raced back to Laurelhurst, found the helmets and raced back.  I got there just in the knick of time and I didn’t have the presence of mind to inspect the kids’ transition areas.

Big problem.

The kids left the water just fine.  Finn was in roughly 7th place and Reese was a few spots behind him.  But things went downhill from there — for Reese.  While Finn had a fairly slow transition, he recovered to finish 10th overall out of 99 and no. 1 among eight- and under competitors.

For Reese it was quite another story.  First she couldn’t get her shoes on properly — my mistake for not opening them wide enough to slip in.  Worse, though, was her bike.  It turns out when they laid it down they twisted the front wheel, and no one — including me — noticed.  That caused the brakes to lock, which made the bike barely rideable.   So unrideable was it that Reese went from middle of the pack after the transition (slow because of the shoes) to dead last in the entire field — by about fifteen minutes.  I was very proud of her for doing the 1/2 run in tears — quite a showing of resolve.

Lesson learned: failing to prepare is preparing to fail.  I should have packed the kids’ gear yesterday.  Had I have done so, I would likely not have forgotten the helmets, and had I not forgotten the helmets, I would have had time to properly set up their transition areas.  Instead I played golf.

Reese’s resulting disaster is on my hands.  I put golf over the kids’ preparation.

It will not happen again.

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A follow-up to Saturday’s entry in re: Finn’s Zeeks Pizza Panthers team winning Northeast Seattle Little League’s Farm Division championship.  The theme of my victory speech yesterday was simple: we won the championship — and never lost a game in two years — because of the players’ willingness to work just that much harder than the next guy.  I did not realize how true that was until today.

To wit:  All year long our achilles heal was base running.  Too many instances of running off the base on fly balls resulted in double plays.  By no means were base running problems unique to us, but it troubled me a great deal.

The extra work Finn and his buddy Carter Ellis did the night before the championship game contributed mightily toward the Panthers’ championship.

On the evening before the game, during Laurelhurst Elementary’s ice cream social, I called a special practice.  Finn and his teammates Mats Bashey and Carter Ellis were the only ones who showed up.  We hit a little — I had to throw ’em a bone — but 90% of our focus was on fly ball base running (run off the base just far enough to get back if it’s caught, etc.)   That practice built on our pre-game practice before our previous playoff win.  We later supplemented it with another ten minutes before the championship game.

In the 5th inning of Saturday’s championship game, Carter was on 2nd base.  Wyatt hit a fly ball and third base coach Rick Frederking mistakenly told him to get flyin’.  Carter led off generously, but didn’t do what his coach said and, consequently, got back to second base as soon as the ball was caught.  As Carter was not doubled up, the inning continued with two outs.  Jack Frederking followed that up with a single that turned into a home run thanks to three errors.  Elias Lara followed that up with the same thing.  A 12-6 lead and thanks to the five-run limit rule, we were champions

Had Carter been doubled up, the Bombers would have batted in the sixth inning down 9-6.  I have no idea what would have happened, but I do know the Bombers really wanted to win.

None of this donned on me until Monday night, when Rick Frederking opined that Carter “bailed (him) out” on the aforementioned play.  I pieced it all together and asked Carter’s dad to ask Carter what gave him the presence of mind to run the bases as he did.  His answer: “I remembered what we had worked on the night before.”

Wow.

By no means was Carter the only one who went the extra yard during the season.  Many guys did it throughout this season and last.  In Saturday’s game, however, it is literally the case that his willingness to go the extra yard — during the ice cream social, no less — played a huge part in our victory.  It may not have won us the game, but it certainly prevented the Bombers from getting another chance to win, and knowing how good that team is, that was almost as good.

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I quite like these:

Rules33

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My favorite player's words about golf etiquette: more important to know than actually playing.

My favorite player’s words about golf etiquette: more important to know than actually playing.

 

No doubt an important part of being a good golfer is, well, being a good player.  But the far more important part, in my opinion, is being a good playing partner.   That’s why I found this piece from Arnold Palmer worth reposting here:

10 Rules for Good Golf Etiquette

I. Don’t be the slowest player

In my casual games at Bay Hill, we get around in under four hours — and that’s in fivesomes. Evaluate your pace of play honestly and often, and if you’re consistently the slowest one in your group, you’re a slow player, period. Encourage everyone to move quickly enough so you find yourself right behind the group in front several times, both early and late in the round.

Remember the old staples of getting around in good time: Play “ready golf” (hit when ready, even if you aren’t away) until you reach the green, be prepared to play when it’s your turn on the tee and green, and never search for a lost ball for more than five minutes.

II. Keep your temper under control

In the final of the Western Pennsylvania Junior when I was 17, I let my putter fly over the gallery after missing a short putt. I won the match, but when I got in the car with my parents for the ride home, there were no congratulations, just dead silence. Eventually my father said, “If I ever see you throw a club again, you will never play in another golf tournament.” That wake-up call stayed with me. I haven’t thrown a club since.

Throwing clubs, sulking and barking profanity make everyone uneasy. We all have our moments of frustration, but the trick is to vent in an inoffensive way. For example, I often follow a bad hole by hitting the next tee shot a little harder — for better or worse.

III. Respect other people’s time

Because time is our most valuable commodity, there are few good reasons for breaking a golf date. Deciding last-minute to clean the garage on Saturday, or getting a call that the auto-repair shop can move up your appointment by a day, just doesn’t cut it.

Always make your tee times, and show up for your lesson with the pro a little early. Social functions are no exception.

IV. Repair the ground you play on

I have a penknife that’s my pet tool for fixing ball marks, but a tee or one of those two-pronged devices is fine. As for divots, replace them or use the seed mix packed on the side of your cart.

Rake bunkers like you mean it. Ever notice that the worse the bunker shot, the poorer the job a guy does raking the sand? Make the area nice and smooth — don’t leave deep furrows from the rake. Before you exit the bunker, ask yourself, Would I be upset if I had to play from that spot?

V. Be a silent partner

During one of my last tour events as a player, I noticed another pro making practice swings in my field of vision as I was getting ready to hit a shot. I stopped, walked over and reminded him (maybe too sternly) that it was my turn to play. The point is, stand still from the time a player sets himself until the ball has left the club.

Even with the advent of spikeless shoes, the etiquette rule of never walking in someone’s line of play on the putting green is an absolute. The area around the hole in particular is sacred ground. The first thing to note when you walk onto a green is the location of every ball in your group, then steer clear of their lines to the hole.

Know where to stand and when to keep quiet. Position yourself directly across or at a diagonal from a player setting up. Never stand on the line of play, either beyond the hole or directly behind the ball. When a player is about to hit a shot, think of the fairway as a cathedral, the green a library.

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Being Wrong

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There is inner girl

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