Posts tagged ‘leadership’

5 Simple steps to JOY


Joy is a state of mind and an orientation of the heart; a feeling of great pleasure and happiness. Although you can’t always be happy, you can be joyful and Dr. Seuss states it well: Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.

Rather than complaining, whining and criticizing we can choose to rise above and bring light and joy to a sometimes dark and unfortunate situation or set of circumstances. Apply these fundamental guidelines for a joyful life.

1. Be Kind to Yourself and Others 

No one is perfect.  We’ve all made errors, whether it be in something we said or did or didn’t do.  Remember that next time you find yourself frustrated at a co-worker, driver or even a family member.  A powerful video on the power in positive actions: 3-minute Thai Good Stories.

2. Gratitude and Appreciation

Appreciate what is, appreciate yourself, appreciate your life, appreciate your friends and family, appreciate all the good and not so good, appreciate all your challenges, and know that everything is exactly the way it should be. The more you will do just that, the more you express your gratitude and appreciation, the happier you will feel, and the quality of your life will improve tremendously.

The song, HAPPY by Pharrell Williams has a website which plays 24 hours of people dancing to the music.  My absolute favorite segment is the one featuring DOWN SYNDROME children and adults.  Learn to dance in the rain, for without rain we wouldn’t have rainbows or flowers.

3. Lighten Up & Let Go

Are you a worry-wart?  Worrying is negative goal setting and robs you of energy.  Nothing positive comes from worrying so if you find yourself obsessing over something in this negative way, stop listening to yourself and start talking to yourself…in a positive manner with affirmation to empower and be uplifting.

Forgiveness – holding on to anger, resentment, hatred and fear are toxic to your well-being.  Jason Gray’s lyrics in his song “Fear is Easy, Love is Hard” provides insight into the power of letting go and letting love rule.

4. Serve Others

You may think you don’t have the time or energy to reach out and help others, but the truth is, when you do, you will become full of joy and energy.  Practice doing RAK – Random Acts of Kindness (from holding a door open to given a compliment, smile or hug to someone).  Homeless Lottery Winner is a video which demonstrates the power of serving and caring for others.

5. Laugh often

Laughter provides an immediate vacation.  I saw a post on Facebook this week that cracked me up:  “When you see someone wearing camouflage make sure to walk into so they know it’s working.”   Life will give you plenty of things to chuckle at, if you choose to change your attitude and embrace it.  Dogs and children give us a steady supply.  Who made this mess?

What Do Tough Times Say About You?


Sharing a blog post that I’m sure many can benefit from reading.  TCOY!  Coach Lucy


What Do Tough Times Say About You? 


It’s one thing to have a bad day yet quite another to fall on tough times. These are the days when it’s hard to get out of bed, not knowing how you’re going to make it through the day. These are the days when it feels like the world is crumbling around you and you’ve been hit by a two-by-four by the time you go to bed at night. Yet, these are the times that shape character and show what you’re made of. So what do tough times say about you?

Unfortunately, for most of us, there comes a time when we will experience a major setback. Whether we’re confronted by a personal tragedy, faced with a serious financial crisis, or struck by an uncontrollable event, these are the times that test our will and our spirit.

Everyone reacts to these situations differently. Some people get angry, feel sorry for themselves, and cast blame; other people remain calm, create an action plan to move forward, and look for a trace of blue in the dark skies ahead. The fact is, the way you respond to these situations in the short term can impact your long-term success and happiness. As George S. Patton said, “The test of success is not what you do when you are on top. Success is how high you bounce when you hit bottom.”

Character Matters During Tough Times

Be Positive. Surround yourself with positive and supportive people.

Remain calm and levelheaded. Count to ten. Try to make decisions based on fact rather than emotion.

Accept support. There are wonderful people who care about you. Don’t shut them out, or worse, take your problem out on them. They’re trying to help.

Learn from the past. Have you faced a similar situation in the past? Apply lessons learned. There’s no need to reinvent the wheel.

Seek professional counsel. Identify someone to serve as a sounding board. Gain from their knowledge, experience, and objective viewpoint.

Face reality. Don’t run away from the problem; run toward it. Accept reality as it is, not as you want it to be.

Own the problem. Don’t waste precious time and energy making excuses or casting blame. Move forward rather than dwelling in the past.

Make tough choices. Don’t procrastinate or hold out for the perfect answer; there may not be one. Identify your options and create a plan of action. You’ll gain more from moving forward in a deliberate fashion than from running around like a chicken without a head.

Set priorities. Don’t treat every option or activity equally. It’s smarter to do the important things rather than to complete every item on your list.

Build momentum. Big problems are best solved in small pieces. Tackle short-term items to achieve wins while you address the root cause.

Remain true to your values. This is no time to compromise your integrity. Listen to your conscience. You have to live with yourself for the rest of your life.

Be loyal. Don’t throw anyone under the bus to save your hide. In fact, putting the needs of others first may supply the positive energy you need to move forward.

Find an outlet for relaxation. Life is a marathon, not a sprint. Identify ways to relax and reduce stress. That’ll help you complete the mission with your sanity intact.

Be a leader. These are the times when real leaders show their character. Lead by example. Be the first to “take a hit” before asking others to do the same.

Never quit. As Richard M. Nixon said, “A man is not finished when he’s defeated. He’s finished when he quits.”

Keep the faith. When nothing seems to work, faith often does.

Learn from the experience. Make sure to learn from the experience. You may have to apply this lesson another day. One thing this teaches us is that life is filled with “ups and downs,” so make the most of the “in-betweens.”

From Tough Times to Good Times

Believe in yourself. This too shall pass. This isn’t the first or the last time that you’re going to face tough times. If the situation is within your control, do something about it; if not, accept it for what it is and try to make the best of it. You survived the last time you faced a crisis, and you will this time as well. Remember, it’s not going to get better by sitting around. In fact, left unattended, small problems often become bigger ones.

It’s easy to look like a star when times are good, but when times are tough, your true character comes into full view. Be strong. Don’t compromise your integrity; don’t lower your standards; and above all, don’t quit. You’re better than that. You owe it to yourself to overcome the problem, as you have so many times before. There is great wisdom in Friedrich Nietzsche’s truism, “That which does not kill us makes us stronger.” The key is to get through tough times with dignity and grace. So hold your head up high. No one ever said it’s easy. And for that, you’ll have more reason to be proud when it’s over. Tough times say a lot about us. Let’s hope that they say only good things about you!

Charles Schulz Philosophy


The following is the philosophy of Charles Schulz, the creator of the ‘Peanuts’ comic strip.

You don’t have to actually answer the questions.  Just ponder on them.
Just read straight through, and you’ll get the point.  This is what the TCOY philosophy and lifestyle embraces.  Take Care of You!  Coach Lucy

1. Name the five wealthiest people in the world.

2. Name the last five Heisman trophy winners.

3. Name the last five winners of the Miss America pageant.

4  Name ten people who have won the Nobel or Pulitzer Prize..

5. Name the last half dozen Academy Award winners for best actor and actress.

6. Name the last decade’s worth of World Series winners.


How did you do?

The point is, none of us remember the headliners of yesterday.

These are not second-rate achievers.

They are the best in their fields.

But the applause dies.

Awards tarnish.

Achievements are forgotten.

Accolades and certificates are buried with their owners.



Here’s another quiz. See how you do on this one:

1. List a few teachers who aided your journey through school.

2. Name three friends who have helped you through a difficult time.

3. Name five people who have taught you something worthwhile.

4. Think of a few people who have made you feel appreciated and special.

5. Think of five people you enjoy spending time with.



Easier?  The lesson:

The people who make a difference in your life are not the ones with the most credentials, the most money or the most awards..

They simply are the ones who care the most.


Be Yourself! Everyone Else Is Taken!



Fill Your Own Shoes First


The beauty of SERVE is inescapable simplicity and actionable clarity.

Ken Blanchard and Mark Miller capture, “The Secret,” of leadership in five letters, SERVE.


See the future: envision and communicate a compelling picture of a preferred future.

  1. What do I want to be true of the future?
  2. Why should anyone care?
  3. How will progress be measured?


Engage and develop others: recruit and align people for the right job. Create environments where people bring vision to life.

  1. What invited my engagement in the past?
  2. Which of these factors are missing in those I lead?
  3. How can I help teams and individuals grow?


Reinvent continuously: continuously focus on improvement.

  1. How do I need to change?
  2. Where do I want different outcomes?
  3. What organizational changes will accelerate progress?


Value results and relationships: generate measurable results and cultivate great relationships.

  1. Which is my personal bias as a leader – results or relationships?
  2. How can I compensate for the area that’s not my personal strength?
  3. What happens if I don’t broaden my definition of success?


Embody values: live fully aligned with stated values.

  1. What values do I want to drive behaviors in my organization?
  2. How can I communicate these values?
  3. What are my actions communicating?

A Lesson In Life & Longevity… Size this one up!

Little Mouse!

The extraordinary scene was captured by photography student Casey Gutteridge at the Santago Rare Leopard Project in Hertfordshire. The 19-year-old, from Potters Bar, Hertfordshire, who was photographing the leopard for a course project, was astounded By the mouse’s behaviour.

He said: “I have no idea where the mouse came from – he just appeared in the enclosure after the keeper had dropped in the meat for the leopard. He didn’t take any notice of the leopard, just went straight over to the meat and started feeding himself.”

“But the leopard was pretty surprised – she bent down and sniffed the mouse and flinched a bit like she was scared. In the meantime the mouse just carried on eating like nothing had happened.

But even a gentle shove does not deter the little creature from getting his fill…” It was amazing, even the keeper who had thrown the meat into the enclosure was shocked – he said he’d never seen anything like it before.”

Project owner Jackie James added: “It was so funny to see – Sheena batted the mouse a couple of times to try to get it away from her food.” But the determined little thing took no notice and just carried on.”

Sheena was brought in to the Santago Rare Leopard Project from a UK zoo when she was just four months old. She is one of 14 big cats in the private collection started by Jackie’s late husband Peter in 1989. The African Leopard can be found in the continent’s forests, grasslands, savannas, and rainforests.

So the mouse continued to eat the leopard’s lunch andshow the leopard who was the boss. Just proves no one canpush you around without your permission.

Be nice to others because...

Time WILL make a difference!

One day you will no longer be the big dog… Just the old dog…
And my friend, WE are now the old dogs.


None of us can do everything,
but we can each do something!

Risk Rejection – Good things could happen…


The Anointed

Have you ever step out, way out, of your comfort zone knowing the odds of rejection were likely but thought why not…that 1% might prevail?

I hope you have and if you haven’t, I’d encourage you to do so.  Nothing ventured nothing gained and you might be surprised with a non-rejection.

Below are two stories that should definitely inspire you.  FYI – The second one has a follow-up video.

1.  College student asks to come on stage and perform with Billy Joel

2.  Jackie delivers.  High five to this awesome lady who goes the extra mile!

The follow-up video – shows again Jackie is one genuine heart loving person.

How many times over the years have you really wanted something, but never asked for it? A promotion, a date, a marriage proposal even, or something much smaller, it’s only the fear of rejection that stops us.

We stumble and talk ourselves out of doing it because we allow our THOUGHTS of rejection , embarrassment or whatever get in the way.  We’ve all been there and missed opportunities.

My TCOY Challenge for this month is to TAKE A RISK…do something completely outside your comfort zone.  By doing so you will learn to overcome fear and increase your confidence and courage.  Think of how a toddler or children are relentless…they ask and keep asking.   If we aren’t growing, we’re dying…so seize the day.

One of things I recently did is asked the owner of a company if he would be willing to barter services.  It wasn’t something most people would even think to do but I saw it as a great opportunity for both of us.  Guess what…he was all about it!

Feel free to come back and share your experience.  Be Well and remember to TCOY!

Coach Lucy


Input = Output Coach Smith on the horrific shootings in Conn.


The article below was written by Linfield College Head Football Coach Joe Smith.  He sent it to his players after the horrific school shooting in Connecticut.  

I liked what he said and how he said it.  I wanted to share with you.  My apologies for the distorted format, the copy/paste layout failed to give me a clean copy.  However, the message is clearly powerful.  


Coach Lucy



I write to you today with a heavy heart.  I feel I would be remiss as your coach if I did not address this as a team, and give you whatever grain of wisdom and perspective I can.  Forgive me if I am not well spoken in this, this really has impacted so many of us.

I am not saying I have all the answers by any means, but this is just my honest opinion to you because I care so deeply about this Country, this State, and this Program.  I believe we can do something about this.  I know it is long, but I ask you sit somewhere quiet and please think on this deeply.

What happened twice last week in America was shocking.  This is not the Middle East, or war torn Eastern Europe, but rather our own countrymen killing you and I, our sisters, our mothers, our children.  A line was crossed on Friday in Connecticut that I never dreamed someone or something could cross; the purposeful execution of 1st graders.

Why did this happen?  How could this happen?

How do we fix it?  Our President says “this must not happen again”.  How do we bring that about?  Somehow as a people we must find a way.

If we do not understand the cause, we cannot prevent it.  Band aids will not cure the infection.

What is the cause?  The bottom hard fact is that we have many messed up young men in this world.  You can call them mentally ill, or whatever label you want.  But the facts are that we as a society are failing the young men and women your age in this country.

We as adults have allowed our youth to grow up in a culture that ill prepares them for the world they encounter when they leave the home.  We as adults in America have flat failed our children.  Why?  Because we are lazy.  We take the easy way, the easy road well worn by blind masses that do things and allow things without stopping to think what the long term affects could be.

INPUT equals OUTPUT.  Never has that been more accurate.

We do not allow smoking confined areas because science has shown 2nd hand smoke can lead to cancer.  Well, that same science has proven beyond ANY shadow of a doubt that violent movies, pornographic material, and violent video games DIRECTLY lead to increase violence toward women and others.  It is a fact.

How can this evil act occur in our country you ask?  I say it is because we allowed it to grow.

What is the answer for prevention?  Is it Gun Control?  Is it more mental health workers for teens?

I say they are Band Aids, and will not fix the problem.  Look at China and the knife attack that just occurred there in cutting 22 children.

The problem is our Culture . We don’t like the output, so the problem is the input.

The fabric of our Society is crumbling before our very eyes.  You may not see it, as you know nothing different.  Talk to your grandparents who have seen 3-4 generations pass.  Look at the sadness in their eyes. They know better.

I say we have a problem when I go to pre-game meeting in Graf 101 and see 25 teammates sitting down against a wall having their own virtual conversations on their phones!  I say we have a problem when you walk across campus and no one looks you in the eye, rather they look at their phone.  For some it is their only friend in the world.  You know what speaks to my children at home for discipline?  Take their phone away.

I worry that young men of your age do not know the difference between a virtual relationship or a virtual experience and reality.  In fact, for most young men their video game experience is much more intriguing and interesting than their real life.  If left to themselves, why would they not spend more time in a cool virtual environment than a lonely boring real one?  You see the movie Wall-E?

The adult male brain is not fully developed for most until around 20 years of age, so why would we fill it with so much adult information so early?  There is no question we allow our children to grow up too
fast with information they are not developmentally ready for.  We have a 21 year age minimum for alcohol consumption for the same reason.

We know it is not healthy for you, as you can’t  physically process it.  My wife has fought the virtual war in our household tooth and nail with our children.  She has been made by them to seem outdated, ill informed, uncaring etc… You know what?  She has been right on. There is no question in my mind.

Even as an adult, the extent of the trash we fill our minds with is staggering.  Why would we willingly fill our minds with poison?  Do you really believe you are immune to its affects?  I believe you are just
as vulnerable as I.

Besides the isolation we have created in our society, and growing our kids up too fast, I believe fathers have flat dropped the ball with their children.  Any man that is not actively involved parenting his own children is not a man in my eyes.  He is a selfish individual that is leaving his heavy lifting for others to do.  Period.

Parenting takes two parents; it is way too hard to do the job by yourself.  Most likely the kids would have won that virtual world power struggle in our household if there was only one parent there.  No parent can meet all of child’s needs by his or herself, and sad fact is too many women are shouldering this heavy burden alone in our country.  Where are our men?

Every evil young man that committed an act such as this; had a Dad that dropped the ball.  These dads were not directly involved shaping their sons’ lives, making sure they had the tools the needed to be successful in life.  Their selfish decisions, (I don’t care what the reason was, they were not there) lead to other’s lives being lost.  We can sugar coat it any way we choose, but that is a fact.

So, politicians are going to point to the band aids, but I want each of you to examine the society you belong to, and find ways to make a difference in those around you.  “To whom much is given, much is expected” that means you and me.  Put your phone down a little more, turn off that screen more often, and engage those around you.  Create

meaningful relationships and give of yourself a little more.  Try watching uplifting shows more often, or reading material that is positive and possibly inspiring.

When you become a father someday, do not take the easy path of putting job and convenience above what is best for your children.  They are your responsibility, and they do not know what is good for them, yet.  You are the parent, they are the child.  If you can’t make that kind of commitment, then don’t have kids.  Get a dog.

You are the future leaders of our society and your generation will shape our country sooner rather than later.

My heart breaks for the families burying their children today.  My heart aches for the parents who have presents under a tree for children who will never open those presents.  I can’t begin to understand the grief they are experiencing.  Tears ran freely down my face when I read of principal Dawn Hochsprung and Mary Sherlack giving their lives in the attempt to prevent the killer from murdering the students in their charge.

And then you read about 1st grade teacher Vicki Soto.  A young woman who in one terrible moment faced pure evil eye to eye and chose to literally shield her young students from the bullets with her own body, allowing some to escape and live.  What heroes those women are to me.

These acts of bravery are what I want to remember.

All of us will be weighed and measured when we are called upon to act in many differing levels of extreme adversity our lifetimes.

Dr. King said, “The ultimate measure of man is not where he stands in moment of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of crisis and adversity”.

Phillip Brooks said “character may be manifested in moments of greatness, but it is made in the small ones.”

I believe they are both right.

Every day, every minute we are building our character.  The moments of crisis in our lives will allow others to see the man inside us, but that man is being built every day by the choices we make and how we spend our time and energy, and the input we allow into minds.

“All that is necessary for evil to triumph, is for good men to do nothing.”

It is time for my generation, and the one before me, to step up and start doing something about this.  It is time for your generation to take notice of our mistake, and take steps to not repeat it.

Coach Smith

be that person

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