Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Lincoln's Leadership Lesson--Never Take Away People's Primary Reason For Action

A friend once told Abraham Lincoln he was concerned about Cabinet Officer Salmon Chase's ambition for the presidency, and he thought Lincoln should ask Chase to resign. Lincoln had observed that Chase's department was functioning very well, and as long as it continued to do so he would not worry about Chase's presidential aspirations. 

To drive the point home he told of a time when he and his step-brother were plowing a cornfield in Indiana, he was driving the horse and his step-brother guiding the plow. The horse, naturally lazy and slow, suddenly rushed across the field so fast the boys could hardly keep pace with him. On reaching the end of the furrow, Lincoln discovered an enormous horse-fly fastened to the horse and knocked it off. His step-brother asked why he did that; whereupon Lincoln explained that he didn't want the horse bitten. 

"But," protested his step-brother, "that's all that made him go!" "Now," said Lincoln, "if Mr. Chase has a presidential horse-fly biting him, I'm not going to knock it off if it will only make his department go."


Wednesday, April 22, 2020

A Dozen Insights That Can Be Helpful For Coaches

  1. Put five people in a lifeboat and they will get along splendidly. Put those same five people on a luxury yacht and they’ll fight over who has to serve the drinks.
  2. Even Jesus had trouble with twelve guys.
  3. In matters of style, swim with the current; in matters of principle, stand like a rock.– Thomas Jefferson
  4. Victory is won not in miles but in inches. Win a little now, hold your ground, and later, win a little more.– Louis L’Amour
  5. A day of worry is more exhausting than a week of work.– John Lubbock
  6. Start by doing what’s necessary; then do what’s possible, and suddenly you are doing the impossible.– St. Francis of Assisi
  7. It is easier to fight for one’s principles than to live up to them.– Alfred Adler
  8. If you spend your whole life waiting for the storm, you’ll never enjoy the sunshine.– Morris Wesley
  9. You can’t get much done in life if you only work when you feel good.–Jerry West
  10. Did you know that the term “Blue Chip” comes from the color of the poker chip with the highest value, blue?
  11. I always wondered why somebody doesn’t do something about that. Then I realized I was somebody.– Lily Tomlin
  12. Men, like nails, lose their usefulness when they lose direction and begin to bend.– Walter Savage Landor 

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Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Doing Too Many Things At Once May Not Be Saving Us Time And Could Be Harming Our Health

In the 1740s, Lord Chesterfield offered the following advice to his son: “There is time enough for everything in the course of the day if you do but one thing at once, but there is not time enough in the year if you will do two things at a time. Here are a few things that bear out Chesterfield may have been right:
  • Numerous studies have shown the sometimes fatal danger of using phones and other electronic devices while driving.
  • A 2005 British study found that workers distracted by email and phone calls suffer a fall in IQ more than twice that found in marijuana smokers.
  • A Vanderbilt University found that task-switching leads to time lost as the brain determines which task to perform.
  • A UCLA study found thru the use of brain scans that multitasking adversely affects learning. “Even if you learn while multitasking, that learning is less flexible so you cannot retrieve the information as easily,” it says.
  • “People who have achieved great things often credit a finely honed skill for paying attention. When asked about his genius, Isaac Newton responded that if he had made any discoveries, it was “owing more to patient attention than to any other talent.”

—Adapted from Toronto Star: Can you finish this story without being interrupted? Doing too many things at once may not be saving us any time, and could be harming our health by Christine Rosen


Wednesday, April 8, 2020

Life Lessons From Dr. Seuss

  • Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is youer than you. 
  • Why fit in when you were born to stand out?
  • You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose. You’re on your own. And you know what you know. And you are the guy who’ll decide where to go.
  • Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not.
  • A person’s a person, no matter how small.
  • The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.
  • Everything stinks till it’s finished.
  • Sometimes the questions are complicated and the answers are simple.
  • I’ve heard there are troubles of more than one kind; some come from ahead, and some come from behind. But I’ve brought a big bat. I’m all ready, you see; now my troubles are going to have troubles with me!
  • Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living, it’s a way of looking at life through the wrong end of a telescope.
  • Think left and think right and think low and think high.
  • And will you succeed? Yes indeed, yes indeed! Ninety-eight and three-quarters percent guaranteed.
  • Step with care and great tact, and remember that life’s a great balancing act. 
  • From there to here, from here to there, funny things are everywhere.


Coach Yourself: A Motivational Guide For Coaches And Leaders

About This Book
Coach Yourself is a unique book, compiled exclusively for coaches to provide you with physical, mental and spiritual motivation throughout the season. In his follow-up to A Season In Words, veteran coach Dan Spainhour arms you with quotes and motivational ideas to help you achieve peace of mind throughout the season from how to stay motivated to handling critics.


Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Lessons From A Wolf: Team Unity Through Individual Uniqueness

Every wolf has its own voice. Every wolf respects the voice of every other wolf.

There is not a more eerie, mournful, frightening or beautiful sound at night than the musical extravaganza of a howling wolf pack. Campers and hunters who have heard this chorus are filled with wonder but are also usually immobilized by fear. Because of the melody of voices, it often sounds like they are surrounded by scores of wolves.

In truth, there are usually no more than five to eight wolves howling in a pack. The secret is that the wolves are always careful not to duplicate each other. Each wolf assumes a unique pitch, respecting the distinctiveness of the other members of the pack. While the notes may change, as in any beautiful song, one wolf will not copy the pitch of another.
Interestingly, this respect for the individual only emphasizes the true unity of the group. They are one, but they are individuals, each contributing to the organization in their own unique way. Every wolf has his own voice. Every wolf respects the voice of every other wolf.

While no one knows for sure why wolves sing, nature has blessed them with a talent they have perfected through the generations. However, we can make some educated guesses about the phenomenon; they are happy, excited, playful, territorial, and sorrowful. They may be simply reaffirming the spirit and unity of their pack. After all, why do birds sing? Why do we?

An additional reason that wolves may howl is that it provides a time, a place and an event for all social barriers to be broken. Wolves have a strong social order, with each member understanding its role and place. When we observe wolves eating together, we see what seems to be curtsies, bows, whines, and hugs—all according to each member’s “place” in the organization. But when wolves howl together, all barriers are dropped, as if to say, “We are one, but we are all unique, so don’t tread on us.” As anyone who has ever listened to this magical howling choir will testify, its message is heard.

The wolf symphony makes the pack appear a much more formidable foe than would be the case if they all sounded the same. No wonder intruders become confused and frightened at what they assume to be an army of wolves.

So, too, are human organizations and teams more formidable when the awareness of each individual is celebrated rather than stifled. Each person assumes his share of responsibility for the group by employing his special talents and strengths. By members expressing their own uniqueness and respecting and encouraging the uniqueness of others, the unit becomes a strong, formidable one.