Showing posts from December, 2021

Success Starts Early - Hit Reset

Christmas is done, and New Year's Day is fast approaching.  I hope the season has been good to each one of you who take the time to read these posts from time to time.  This is the week when so many of us pause to analyze how things have been going in our lives.  Most holidays give us an excuse to relax our discipline, and whether we succumbed to the lure of food, spending, relaxation, or any other opportunity that was presented, most of us recognize we went overboard somewhere.  No wonder the New Year's Resolution is so popular!  Hopefully, however, we don't waste time beating up ourselves over what went wrong.  Instead, this is a good a time as any to learn how to reset . Playing video games as a kid, our console had two buttons on the front: Power and Reset.  If we figured out that we'd gotten into a really bad situation and weren't likely to win the game, sometimes we'd just stop playing and hit the Reset button.  The game would jump back to the starting poi

Success Starts Early - Courage

As a young musician, I once played in a concert series based on MGM's film "The Wizard of Oz" that included live appearances by several of the original munchkins.  It was fascinating to see actors and actresses recounting their experiences with amazing detail, roughly six decades after the movie was released.  Who were some of your favorite characters, and were there any that you didn't like at all?  Most kids I knew were scared of the witch, but it was actually had one of the "good guys" who always bothered me: the Cowardly Lion.  I don't think anybody really admires the individual who will turn and run whenever a situation becomes uncomfortable or dangerous, and this character's defining trait was his poor reactions to his fears.  In everyday life, it is important to have the courage to act.  (Credit: NBC Television Network) In his first inaugural address President Franklin Roosevelt made the statement, "let me assert my solemn belief that th

Success Starts Early - Responsibility

One of my favorite Christmas classics features a scene where the main characters sing a fun song about how they miss the good time they had in the army.  One of their reasons was that there was always someone else in charge where they could "pass the buck" for any bad decisions or outcomes.  This may have been a subtle reference to President Harry Truman, who was said to have a sign on his desk in the Oval Office that read, "The Buck Stops Here".  With all due respect to the imaginary soldier buddies, I think the man who had climbed to the highest office in the land had the right idea.  And it wasn't just a motto - he was willing to make the biggest decisions that led to the end of WWII.  To become successful in any endeavor, you must accept responsibility for your actions.  It seems as though every time something bad happens, there are those who want to assign blame.  Sometimes the rationale is good - we need to know the cause of a problem to keep it from happ

Success Starts Early - Humility

My dad is not big on watching professional sports, although he'll tolerate some time in front of the TV with me from time to time.  When he does watch, however, I've noticed he really gets sour about the kind of players that celebrate by dancing, posing, or otherwise drawing attention to themselves.  We used to go to business meetings with a friend and mentor who spent several years playing professional football, and he similarly commented that he never liked seeing someone celebrate a touchdown by acting like the other 10 guys on the field didn't help him get there.  The superstar athlete who is willing to go about his work, giving others credit for contributions while not seeking their own celebrity recognition, is rare.  But then again, how often do we see individuals in any field of endeavor avoid seeking the applause of others?  Humility is not usually a natural response to success, but it is certainly an important ingredient.  If you run a search online for "hum