This last week included a grand total of seven soccer games for the Kreiling family. Dominic had three varsity games and Gavin had four games in Madison. All soccer, all weekend.
For sure, I had a great time watching them both play. It’s always fun watching my boys doing something they are passionate about.
What I’m specifically grateful for today is the way sports helps them learn to be better leaders and adults. Throughout both of their games they did some things with extreme excellence and they both made mistakes. Regardless of the action, they learned and grew from the experience.
Both learned some priceless and timeless leadership lessons I hope they draw from throughout their lives.
For sure, sports won’t be their careers. That said, their sports experiences are helping them grow and mature into the leaders they can be. Seeing glimpses of that growth over the past week have been awesome!!
A little before noon today my mind was going a million miles a minute. I had an excellent conversation with another franchisee and there were so many thoughts rushing through my brain. Couple them with the insights and ideas from the last week and my brain was positively spinning.
I paused. I set my pen down and closed my laptop. I took a slow and deep breath… and then I went for a walk.
No music, no podcast, no audio book. Just me walking on a perfectly sunny day with no sense of direction or purpose other than letting my brain work everything out with no distractions.
Forty five minutes later I got back home, jotted down my notes, and was ready to start taking action.
What wonders a walk can do for the thought process!
Simple concept, deep gratitude, and years of future practice before I master it.
Several events reminded me today that I have time. Until I’m dead I will have time. At the time of my death time won’t matter to me anyways. I know my time is limited, but I have time until I no longer have use for it.
How often do I tell myself, “I don’t have time for that”? What a lie I tell myself. Yes, I do in fact have time. What I also have are other options of how to spend my time. What’s really happening is that I am choosing how to spend my time and I am deeming that task not worthy.
I am not unable to do something, I am making a choice.
Today I’m grateful for the piece of mind and enlightenment that come with realizing each moment, each second, is a choice I must make. Am I choosing well? How can I choose better more frequently? Until I am aware of the choice to be made I am unable to grow and close the gap between who I am and who I am called to be.
There’s a scene in Men in Black burned into my brain that surfaces every so often. Near the beginning of movie Will Smith and a few other candidates are given a battery of tests. One of those challenges is taking a test in an ornately awkward room.
The chairs are too small and uncomfortable. There are no good writing surfaces for each person. The paper for the test is flimsy and easily penetrated by the pencil. The pencils break. It is one of the worst test taking environments ever.
After suffering a few seconds Will Smith’s character notices a table in the room away from everyone. He casually stands up and slides it across the room to his chair and proceeds to take the test in relative comfort while everyone else squirms.
Often times in life I find myself being held hostage by my own learned helplessness. I am the elephant tied to a stake I could easily rip out if it weren’t for memories of it holding me back when I was an infant. There is nothing getting in my way but my own dogmatic mental constructs.
When I remember to take a step back, to pause, to zoom out, the conclusion is so easy to see. It is so simple once I see it that I laugh out loud at myself afterwards.
Today I remembered to step back. I saw the table and moved it. Problem solved.
I recently watched an intriguing podcast on racism, action, and how to actually make a difference. The speaker did an excellent job of explaining the differences between being “called out,” “called on,” and “called in.”
Call outs are straightforward and don’t often get a positive reaction. The person being called out usually digs their heels in deeper rather than change.
Being called on is similar to being called out, but in a way in which you share your positive views of the individual and ask them to help reconcile the difference you’re seeing in what they’ve expressed.
Being called in is to invite another into the conversation. There is no judgment, only curiosity in learning where the person is coming from. Thus starts a conversation and dialogue allowing us to hear the other person. Essentially it is the concept of “seek first to understand.”
Today I was called in to a conversation. The experience was wildly positive and helps me see how calling in can really make a difference. Prior to this call in I would have just put out my hands to stop the conversation, but this time was very different. Rather than feeling the need to go on the defensive I felt honored. What a huge difference in attitudes in me specifically because of how a conversation was started?