Cheer men on. A few weekends ago, I spent some time thinking about my dad. I thought of our times growing up in a small town in Virginia; the moments of fishing and hunting with him. We spent time in the woods exploring and discovering all the old farms and mountains in that area. I also spent some time reflecting on his life as a man. A young father figuring out life much like I am now with a young family.
Tag Archives: Men
Our lives are full of myths. Old wives’ tales. Superstitions. Here a few of the more popular myths.
– Most of your heat is lost through your head.
– Gum takes seven years to digest.
– Sugar causes hyperactivity in kids (really?).
– Lightning never strikes twice.
– Peeing on a jellyfish bite will make it hurt less.
None of those are true, despite any anecdotal information to the contrary. Trust me—I looked them up. We avoid walking under ladders or change paths if we see a black cat. You might worry if you break a mirror or feel more confident in your lucky underwear.
I’m not a free thinker. I prefer reading what others have to say, organizing ideas and making connections. So this post isn’t as much original writing as it is highlights from a few books (and one video) that have inspired me.
I particularly like reading about people who are good at what they do. One of the most fascinating things about high performers is how much consistency exists across disciplines. High performers in sports, business, the military and every other field are all the same. Their big secret is there is no big secret; they are regular people who choose to do small things well, day after day, year after year, all pointed in the same direction.
In my documentary work, I have had the privilege to interview thousands of successful leaders around the world. Through these conversations, I have learned that the most influential leaders are often strategic in what they say no to. They are consciously turning down power, applause, and or commitments that take them off mission. Much like Eric Liddell who said no to Sunday, George Washington who said no to being a King, or Martin Luther King who said no to violence, distinguished leaders are defined by what they are saying no to more than by what they are saying yes to. These are the leaders who stand the test of time.
A few years ago I was 245 pounds, didn’t sleep well, had high blood pressure, and couldn’t tie my shoes without getting out of breath. The lie that I told myself was that I was comfortable. I justified my body to myself as normal because I was getting older.
It was a trip to my eye doctor that opened my eyes. Pun totally intended. He took my blood pressure to test for blurriness. He almost gasped when he read the dial and demanded to get a second result. It read 195 over 120. For those of you that don’t know it, 120 over 80 is the norm. He mentioned to me that by law he was required to call an ambulance. WHAT!
I recently polled a few wives at the carpool line at pickup for my kid’s school and asked them what they really wanted for Valentine’s Day this year. Their answers may surprise you as they did for sure surprise me. One woman, in particular, said she really doesn’t want anything. She feels Valentine’s day is too over-commercialized and that celebrating your significant other should be something you do consistently and not just one day. She said she doesn’t need things to be bought for her and would prefer her husband to make something sentimental or plan a fun night out. I asked her for more details, and she said “I would rather have my husband do tasks without being asked to show his love and appreciation for her all year round. Tasks like folding laundry, putting away the dishes and taking the car in for repairs.”