Coach John Wooden has his Pyramid of Success with so many great ideas and success principles and there is a reason why Coach John Wooden says this is the most important traits of his Pyramid of Success. It reminds me of the saying that says it's a long road to the top and a short drop to the bottom. Self Control in all aspects of life is important and it's important for us to take ownership of this as we are the only ones that control it in our own lives. When you look around, it's easy to see how this is a trait that many people simply don't have. It's something that I know I need to work on in my life, every day. That last quote is HUGE - "Control yourself so others wont' have to do it for you." Nothing worse than choosing to give control away to others by not taking ownership for it ourselves. There is nobody else that can have your best interests in mind (and heart) compared to you doing it for yourself. Again - this is something I need to work on each and every day for myself.
I found two great examples of words affecting others. This is something that is so vitally important to to take with us in our everyday lives. I got to thinking about our words - they are in written from, spoken to others and finally they are thoughts in our own heads too. Each of these is very powerful in what they can do to ourselves and others.
This first example is a very powerful and short video with such a powerful message. Check this video out HERE. This man is sitting with a sign and people are going about their daily business, not paying too much attention to him. Well, that all changes when a lady comes along and makes a HUGE change that helps this guy out in an amazing way. (I'm not going to give it away, it's something you need to watch to see it for yourself.) I always feel like I need to work harder at being a better person (which I do even if I don't watch this video). I have so much work to do with this and I want to pride myself every day to be better.
Secondly - this podcast from Oprah, this is a must listen to. In fact, there are 2 parts. So after you are done listening to part 1, make sure you get connected to part 2 as well. Both of these podcast episodes are 2 of my all-time favorites. Dr. Maya Angelou is a very powerful difference maker and she shares some HUGE ideas about how important words are not only for others, but also for ourselves. The information that she has in parts 1 and 2, are simply PURE GOLD! Make sure you check out both episodes.
All that I know is that words are powerful difference makers. I've seen the difference they can make for ourselves and others - words that are thoughts, words that are spoken, and for sure words that are written. Seeing that we speak all the time - it's important to see how to do it well and to also pick up any tips we can for making a huge difference throughout life for us. I would love to have a conversation about this or other topics that that you have some ideas about.
This week's blog assignment had a couple of things to check out. First was this video, "Become Courageous - A Motivational Video" had so many great reflections for us to use on ourselves. One of the first things that really jumped out to me was this thought "What would your life look like if you decided to be courageous?" WOW... I've never really heard that question asked before, let alone try to apply it to myself. It's a really powerful one if you take it to heart. I start to think about the many areas that I need to be more courageous in my life and I find it encouraging to think about the results that might come my way with having more courage in those areas. One is for sure to keep going after my dream of doing more with podcast, writing a book (or more than one), developing a few video/audio courses, and other things. I can see myself doing it - I just need to get through the limiting beliefs that are holding me back. Nobody's fault other than my own. Do me a favor, ask yourself that question above and get back to me on any thoughts you may have.
Another question from this first video is "What would your life look like if you decided not to care what other people thought of you?" For one thing, I do care what some people think of me - those that I love and care for, the important people in my life. My family, close friends, etc. Others? The critics in the world? The negative ones? NO WAY! I need to not let their opinions hold me back - especially since their opinions don't pay my bills!! How are you with this one?? For some people they worry way too much what others think about them.
The other video link - "Golden Buzzer - Kodi Lee" showed a super talented young man who is blind and is autistic, show tremendous courage when he did a 5 STAR performance on America's Got Talent. The look on the judges faces were something to see, especially Simon. ;-) This emotional and super-powerful performance is something that you need to check out. Since we are talking about bravery & courage, check out Kodi's mom. Talk about a lady who is brave and strong, but one who has so much compassion for her son. That is another huge lesson for all us as the world needs more of those traits now. This story really sends the message that we all are totally capable of doing great things as people with so many more difficulties and challenges are doing great things in their lives. I asked myself, what is my excuse as to why I'm not doing more things that I know I want to do, and even more importantly - I need to do them. How about you?
Finally, I put out a challenge to my students (and myself too) to have the courage to see what we can individually do to unplug from forms of technology that are really getting in the way and causing us problems. Whether it's our phones, computers, video games, etc. This is a powerful reflection moment for us to do some checking to see where we can have some self-improvement. I know I need to maybe switch my time on technology devices to be more productive. There are things that I need to spend time on - there are a couple of training / educational / self-improvement items that need my attention, compared to other non-productive things that I do with technology. I see this happening in school and in all around life way too often and the sad thing about it is that most of the people don't see themselves doing anything wrong or negative. Time is one of THE most important resources we have and we seem to be "wasting" it more and more when it comes to technology. What would you challenge yourself to get better at with technology?
For this week's Positivity Project term about Creativity, I had to admit to myself and my students that this is (at first) was a rough one for me. You see, I don't really consider myself as a creative person. I do see, like most people, that I am a bigger critic with myself than any other person could ever be. So as I read and listened to the author that wrote "Creative Solutions To Life's Challenges" I got both views - one from the essay he wrote and then the other from the audio of him reading what he wrote. Frank Walker did a great job with this piece.
This helped me right away to see that I am more creative than I think I am. It got me thinking about my parents when I was growing up and how creative they were along with my family members at the time - grandparents, aunts & uncles, friends of my parents, etc. They all gave me lessons in creativity every day of my life it seems. Now that I am in my 50's I can say I'm more creative in things in my life, but not to the extent that they all were (from what I remembered) every day in their lives. Great lessons none-the less.
I also connected with the fact that I can't let labels that some may put on my on what I do for a living, limit me and my confidence. Like many things, I have a choice as to what I do and not do with taking in other people's opinions about just because I'm a teacher, that I do or don't have a lot of Creativity. All that I know is that the world needs the different amounts of creativity that everyone brings to the world from all different areas and we certainly can't go after things in our lives based upon other people's opinions.
This is a good piece of reading for you to check out - or listen to. It got me thinking out of my comfort zone, hope it does for you too.
Found 3 very short stories to help us see and think about having a little more Perspective in our lives. The 3 stories are HERE.
The first of these 3 stories is about "The Muddy Road" - 2 monks are walking and one stops to help a lady out of the mud. So he carries her to safety and puts her down and continues on his way. The other monk is worked up that he did that since they are not supposed to be around females, let alone touch one. The one who helped the lady mentions that he left her back there, why is he still worried about her? Carrying on a worry, burden, etc., does not good for our future. That enables us to keep having that one event cause us more problems than it originally did back when it happened. I know we need to learn from this mistake, maybe even remember some moments of it so we can learn and get better. I also try to let it go. I'm not always successful with that, but I know I need to.
The second story is titled "The Two Wolves" where a grandfather is telling the story to his grandson on how we all have 2 Wolves inside of us.. the good one and the bad one. The one that wins is the one we feed the most! The negative or positive voices we have... that's the key. We all battle with trying to do the right things in our life and we can be our own worst critic for sure. But it is shown over and over again which ever "voice" we let drive us, the one we "feed" the most is the one that will control our thoughts, etc. The key is WE have choice.
The final of the 3 stories is "The Farmer's Fortune" - so many things happen to this farmer and his son, and every time a neighbor says to him "that's too bad that happened..." or "isn't it fortunate that that happened...". The farmer responds the same each time... "perhaps" is all he says. He doesn't pile on in misery & complaining when things are not going well, nor does he get all fired up when things are great. He stays even keeled... no emotional swings or reactions... that's a great message for all of us. It's far more important as to what our reaction is compared to what actually happened to us. We never know the next door to open tomorrow no matter what we went through today.
This was a good and quick exercise to try. Click on the file link above and see what you can get out of these stories as far as perspective goes. Then let me know your thoughts. :-)
This was a powerful assignment for my students and I to work on (even though mine is a little late in getting done). This article that I found "9 Tips To Help You Strengthen Your Integrity" - really gave some good things to digest and reflect on.
Here are a few that I connected with out of the 9 points:
#1 - Keep Your Promises: This is one that when I first read it, I knew right away it was one for me to work on. I work hard to keep my promises to others - I am not always successful, but I sure do try. The one I usually let down is ME! Wow do I have to work on this!! I'm actually used to disappointing myself. I set out to do things and I choose to do other things. Then later, I'll do more damage by beating myself up about it. That's a double whammy so to speak from one failure.
#5 - Examine how you react in knee-jerk situations: This again - powerful reflections here for me - I need to watch and catch earlier how I react to things as they occur. Especially with my wife and kids. When things first happen - good or bad, I tend to have my emotional reaction and then reflecting on it later. I need to catch it in the moment and watch the way react... heck, I need to change my reaction to that of being a more positive one. When it's my negative reaction added to the negative or bad event, you can see how that does not make anything better. It usually only makes things worse. :-(
#6 Polish your communication skills - This one is reminding us that it never stops! We never become perfect at communicating. Wait - What??? Even with all this great technology that so many people think does everything for us?? Yeppers! It is being found now in so many of these "soft skills" are not soft at all. They are becoming more valuable then ever before. So this is one of the main ones (heck, all of them really) that really pays to work on. All. The. Time!
#8 Avoid people who lack integrity - This is a biggie! We are who we hang out with. Those people that we hang out with - we let them affect us, mainly our thinking! Those people that lack integrity affect those around them with the choices / decisions they make. Their actions affect us. Then we have to work twice as hard to overcome their poor decisions and the poor decisions we make too. That is not worth it at all.
The other points are important too - I could have plenty to say (or write) about them too. Check out the article for yourself, and like I said, this is all worth putting in the extra effort in improving in all of these areas.
What a story - one that most people have heard about the incident itself, but not the first hand account that Ric Elias shares. It was a perfect fit with our Positivity Project thought for the week - "Being Present & Giving Others My Attention."
His story was all about being on the flight that crashed in the Hudson River in New York City on January 15, 2009. He brings up some very emotional and valuable lessons here about life and what is really important. It reminds us that things can change in the blink of an eye and then depending on the circumstances, we can either do something about what's going on or like in his story, he couldn't.
He reminds us that EGO is a problem and it's one that we have to get over in our lives and the sooner the better. More things matter than ourselves, that's for sure. The fact that he quickly thought of all the things he didn't get a chance to do = a lesson for us not to put things off. I personally loved the wine example that he is not going to save another bottle for sometime later, if there are good people around today to share it with.
We learn so many lessons from tragedies that we would hope they stick with us, but usually those lessons blow by in the wind. A key is the lessons we can learn from HIS story without us having to go through it ourselves. Again, the power of a story is huge. Lessons we can learn at someone else's expense.
I plan on always looking to do things that mean more to me rather than tasks that I "have to do" or am "expected to do" from society, etc. Truthfully, I have put off so many things in my life and at my age, things I have been through personally in my life and stories like this and countless others that I've seen others go through - it's more than time to keep making changes in order to do those things that I need and want to make. ]
Check out the video HERE. Then think about some of the things he says. Role play and empathize if that was you in his seat and how would this experience change you and the rest of your life??
Found a great article that I had to share with my students on the importance on having Emotional Intelligence in our lives in order to succeed. Check out the article HERE. It got me thinking about a book that I read years ago called.."The Emotional Intelligence Quick Book" by Travis Bradberry and Jean Greaves. It's one that I had to pull out of one of my bags as I put it in there with great intent to read it this past summer... needless to say I did not but I still need to read this again.
EQ is something that all of us can work on to get better at. It has so much to do with all the important areas of life - check out this picture that is a great indicator:
Looking at these "leaves", I can see so many of them that (at least to me - my opinion) that they simply blow having a large IQ, out of the water!! Now again, don't get me wrong as I know having a great IQ is not horrible. But the way I see it, the things on this "tree" are just a lot more meaningful in & throughout life that I'd take these things first. It's a good thing too, since I know my IQ is not off the charts anywhere.
Emotional Intelligence predicts performance, so it certainly seems like a good thing to work on and try to improve throughout our lifetime. As I sit here and think about my students (some, maybe not all of them) and the opportunity they have for their lives to improve them, now, at their age... wow I am just blown away comparing it to my timeline of knowing about this after the age of 35 (at least!)
This brings a HUGE connection to our term this week from our Positivity Project - Open Mindedness. It's so powerful to be able to take some new ideas and come up with ways of improving ourselves. So the backend of this idea of my students getting exposed to these skills now at their young ages compared to me where it was later in life, and think of all the people who never take a venture out to learn about EQ or even improving their own EQ. WOW! I think we all know plenty of people who need to work on improving this in their lives, but choose to ignore it or even let their negative thinking get in the way of ever even trying. I know that I do not want to be one of those people who won't ever look at this "tree" above and not want to try and get better in all of those "leaves".
Our most recent blog assignment was all about our current Character term for the week - Teamwork. I found a TED Talk from a high school senior that shared some ideas about teamwork. Find the video HERE on Youtube.
I found it very interesting that he brought up the fact that most teens (a lot of older people too) don't really like working in groups. It seems all to often that we are the ones doing most, if not all the work for the others in the group. Not only is that many times the case, it's done on purpose from the others. They want someone else to do the work for them and then take the credit for it. Obviously that is not good teamwork at all. It's also funny that so many people agree that they are the ones doing all the work and it's the OTHER PEOPLE that are looking for the free ride. That doesn't leave many people in that other people group. :-)
I had a discussion with my classes about this topic and really the importance of seeing this not just as a school connection, but a life connection. Looking back I can't remember ever a time, in all my jobs where I did not have to work with other people or depend on others to get things done. It seems with all the technology in the world today, we still need people to help us get things done. We may use forms of technology to get things accomplished, but those things will always be about and be for people. That's why I think it's imperative for us to keep looking to get along with people. It's not that we have like everyone, but we should look to work with others to get things accomplished. In today's "I'm right, your wrong" type of society, this makes sense to at least try and work on. It's not easy, but it is for sure worth it. The more we can learn about ourselves and others, the better things will be. That will be one of my things that I will always be spending time working on. Teamwork is where it's at.
John O'Leary is quickly becoming my favorite podcast to listen to as it is always emotionally connecting and rejuvenating that I'm finding that I can't miss it. His book "On Fire" is my favorite book, and I also need to get back into reading that book again soon. I need to get connected with this guy even more with all that he has to offer. Great stuff!
When this podcast came out recently, where he interviewed Dr. Kelli Harding, I knew I had to not only share this with my students as a blog assignment, but also to share it with others - which I have. ;-) One of the first lessons that got to me was simply the fact that our technological social world is actually changing our lives - heck, it's been proving to change our biology as Dr. Harding states. It's kind of scary. As I write this, I see a few of my students (the ones doing it a lot) on their phones.. the look withdrawn, low energy, they have work that needs to be done, they have questions they could be asking me; real life taking a back seat to a 7-inch screen. :-(
Another of the many things that struck me as being HUGE LESSONS - was the fact that our relationships can make such a big difference. I have seen that thousands and thousands of times in my life, even this week and truthfully - I've seen it (and experienced it) today! Not quite sure what I would do if it wasn't for the people that I have in my life.
Finally, my third catch from this fantastic podcast - by the way, you can find it HERE - is this awesome quote she shared with the listeners in this podcast, “True health is hidden in the million tiny moments of everyday life.” This statement is so valid, it's just dripping with authenticity and truth! These happen every day and we miss so many of them, I know I do for sure, because we are all caught up in the wrong things that we are trying to keep up with. This is another of many reminders to stop and figure this point out!
Powerful stuff.. this keeping up with my students is fun, challenging, but mostly, it's a very good thing. :-)
Coach John Daly
In Education for almost 31 years. Looking to share insights, thoughts and ideas to help everyone find their own piece of success.