June 12, 2014 | Tom Suddes

Message to Garcia

I was reading an article from New York Times about Jeb Bush.  Politics aside, it was a very interesting article about his “bookishness and pragmatism”.   A voracious reader, the article talked about all the different, almost Gates-like, diversity in what he reads.

The article mentioned that while he was Florida’s Governor (1999 to 2007), new employees would find a copy of a treasured Bush book on the desk:  A MESSAGE TO GARCIA.

I love this story!  I actually have a small pamphlet printed in 1918 that highlights this 1899 essay.

Garcia-3

I am paraphrasing Hubbard’s story… but I think you will get the point.

THE STORY: When war broke out between Spain and the United States, it was necessary to communicate quickly with the leader of the insurgents… a General Garcia. He was somewhere in the mountain vastness of Cuba – no one knew where. Mail or telegraph could not reach him… and the President had to secure his cooperation quickly.

Somebody told the President, “There’s a fellow by the name of ROWAN who will find Garcia for you, if anybody can.”

Andrew S. Rowan, West Point Class of 1881 was a First Lieutenant in the 19th Infantry, U.S.A. (Yes!) Because he knew the topography of Cuba, was familiar with Spanish, and had shown himself to be a brave and prudent solider, Lieutenant Rowan was selected for this mission.

In short, he took the letter, sealed it in an oilskin pouch, strapped it over his heart and crossed from Jamaica to the southern coast of Cuba in a sailboat. He disappeared into the jungle, made his way inland to Garcia’s camp… and DELIVERED THE MESSAGE!!!

In Hubbard’s words: “The point I wish to make is this: McKinley gave Rowan a letter to be delivered to Garcia. Rowan took the letter and did not ask, ‘Where is he at?’ By the eternal! There is a man whose form should be cast in deathless bronze and his statue placed in every college in the land. It is not book learning young men need nor instruction about this and that but a stiffening of the vertebrae which will cause them to be loyal to a trust, to act promptly, concentrate their energies; and do that thing – ‘CARRY A MESSAGE TO GARCIA!’” Read more


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June 11, 2014 | Tom Suddes

“If there’s something to gain and nothing to lose by asking, by all means ASK.”

We are preparing for next week’s SALES BOOT CAMP at Eagle Creek.  I thought I’d share a picture of the orchard, garden and pool area for Eagle Creek alums and new attendees.

Eye in the sky on ECLC.

SALES is about the ASK.  The quote by W. Clement Stone is awfully simple and awfully powerful:

IF THERE’S SOMETHING TO GAIN AND NOTHING TO LOSE BY ASKING, BY ALL MEANS ASK.”

This is almost ALWAYS the case:  SOMETHING TO GAIN … and NOTHING TO LOSE.

JUST ASK.  JUST ASK.  JUST ASK.  JUST ASK.


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June 10, 2014 | Tom Suddes

Maya Angelou: The Most Important Virtue

I was in Winston-Salem this past weekend at Wake Forest with Oprah, Michelle, Bill, et al.  (Full Disclosure:  They were for Maya Angelou Memorial Service.  I was there for the grandkids!)  Thanks to Shane Parrish at Farnam Street, here’s a great little blurb on Maya Angelou and a great quote:

“I’ve always had the feeling that life loves the liver of it. You must live and life will be good to you, give you experiences.”

 


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June 4, 2014 | Nick Fellers

Message is what people hear

What is ‘message’?

A message is not necessarily WHAT YOU SAY, it’s WHAT PEOPLE HEAR.

This is the simplest definition I can offer. It’s adapted from Words the Work.  It’s not what you say, it’s what people hear. By Frank Luntz.

If you geek-out on message, this is a terrific read.

I’ve been using this definition to make people aware of their message.

What do you want people to hear? Ultimately, I suspect it’s that you’re changing lives, saving lives or impacting lives.


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June 4, 2014 | Tom Suddes

“If you want to change the world …”

Admiral William McRaven, a Navy Seal for 36 years, delivered the commencement address at the University of Texas.  If you haven’t seen it or heard it or read it … you should.  It’s been mentioned by a lot of people as one of the finest commencement talks ever.

Here’s the shorthand version of Admiral McRaven’s 10 Life Lessons from Seal Training.

Lesson No. 1:  If you want to change the world, start off by making your bed.

Lesson No. 2: If you want to change the world, find someone to help you paddle.

Lesson No. 3: If you want to change the world, measure a person by the size of their heart, not the size of their flippers.

Lesson No. 4: If you want to change the world, get over being a sugar cookie and keep moving forward.

Lesson No. 5: If you want to change the world, don’t be afraid of the circuses.

Lesson No. 6: If you want to change the world, sometimes you have to slide down the obstacle head first.

Lesson No. 7: If you want to change the world, don’t back down from the sharks.

Lesson No. 8: If you want to change the world, you must be your very best in the darkest moment.

Lesson No. 9: If you want to change the world, start singing when you’re up to your neck in mud.

Lesson No. 10: If you want to change the world don’t ever, ever ring the bell.

At the very end of the 10 lessons, I urge you to check out this link or others which include the actual video and the text of his talk.

Make Each Day Count.

 


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June 3, 2014 | Tom Suddes

“Comparison is the thief of joy.”

“Comparison is the thief of joy.”   Teddy Roosevelt

I saw this quote on the wall of a yoga studio.  Obviously makes a lot of sense in that environment.  The goal is to ‘practice’ yoga with mindfulness and a focus on your own body.  It is not about competing/competition with the instructor or others in the class.

***This took me a while to understand!  When I first started, I couldn’t do any of the 26 Bikram poses, for example, and I couldn’t believe how easy people went into the poses, nor how long they could hold them.

In our For Impact world, this idea of COMPARISON or COMPETITION is a zero sum game.  We should always be looking to be the best we can be … and also looking for wonderful ways to collaborate with other people and organizations.

“Comparison is the thief of joy.”

Joy‘ seems to me to be a much more powerful word than ‘happy‘.

Make Each Day Count.


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June 3, 2014 | Tom Suddes

TIKKUN OLAM: REPAIR THE WORLD.

TIKKUN OLAM:  REPAIR THE WORLD.

I’m reading another magnificent edition of SUCCESS MAGAZINE (July 2014).  Cover story is on Michael Douglas and dealing with life’s ups and downs.

Article closes with this great Hebrew expression Tikkum Olam which Douglas says was an idea handed down from the Old Testament and means “TO REPAIR THE WORLD.” 

REPAIR THE WORLD.  CHANGE THE WORLD.  BE FOR IMPACT.

 


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May 30, 2014 | Tom Suddes

NO “agony of wishing in your heart”.

I forgot to put the full Tagore quote in a post from a week ago.  If you remember, Rabindranath Tagore was the Poet Laureate of Bangledesh … and Bangledesh (formerly Bengal) has been where Holy Cross Fathers/Missionaries have worked since 1835.  It’s also where all of the proceeds from the Bengal Bouts (Notre Dame’s Boxing Tournament) goes.

I think this is a great quote to end the week and start the weekend.

“The song that I came to sing remains unsung to this day. I have spent my days in stringing and unstringing my instrument. The time has not come true; the words have not been rightly set. Only there is the AGONY of WISHING in my heart.”

Let there be no “agony of wishing in your heart“.

Make Each Day Count.

 


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May 28, 2014 | Tom Suddes

The Last of Human Freedoms

“When all the familiar goals in life are snatched away … what alone remains is the last of human freedoms: the ability to choose one’s ATTITUDE in a given set of circumstances.”  – Viktor Frankl

My wonderful niece, Caitlin, just sent me a note referencing MAN’S SEARCH FOR MEANING.

Man's Search for Meaning

This book has been labeled “one of the 10 most influential books in America” by the Library of Congress.  My copy is dated April 1996/Trip Around the World.

msm_date

Viktor E. Frankl was imprisoned in concentration camps for three years during World War II.  The inside flap states that Frankl began to wonder why some of his fellow prisoners were able not only to survive the horrifying conditions, but to grow in the process.

His conclusion — that the most basic human motivation is the will to meaning — which became the basis of his groundbreaking psychological theory, logotherapy.

At FOR IMPACT, we’re always pursuing the idea of purpose and meaning.  This is one of the greatest books of all time that reinforces that ‘search’.

Frankl was very fond of quoting Nietzsche,

“He who has a WHY to live can bear with almost any HOW.”

Just another reason to always start with the WHY.


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May 27, 2014 | Tom Suddes

Reflections on Memorial Day

My dad was a Marine Sergeant in the Pacific in World War II.  Quadalcanal, Iwo Jima and more.  My hero.

My brother Mike was a Marine.  Officer Candidate School then Aviation School then flew helicopters.  Also my hero.

Once got a ‘ticket’ for illegally ‘parking’ (landing) in Yosemite National Park with a helicopter full of Marines.

I can’t count the number of my Notre Dame boxers who have served their country … in all branches of the service … in the Gulf Wars, Iraq and Afghanistan.

I went through the Army ROTC program at Notre Dame in the late 60′s.  Not a ‘fun’ time to be in the military on most campuses, but Notre Dame handled it as well or better than anyone.

Commissioned a 2nd Lieutenant and sent to Fort Benning, Goergia, for Infantry Officer Basic School.  Also squeezed in three weeks of Airborne School, three weeks of expanded Leadership Training, and five weeks of Pathfinder School.

Life/fate is weird.  Every 2nd Lieutenant who graduated from Infantry School at Benning in the five years previous to my class went directly to Vietnam.  Ours did not.  I went on to serve as a Tactical Officer in the Officer Candidate School at Benning for two years.  Then decided to try to go back to Notre Dame to be the Boxing Coach.

It’s been 40 years.  Most of you would not have been present or actually remember the treatment of our soldiers returning from Vietnam.  A ‘political war’ in a country that was largely ‘anti-war’.

Today, we give a standing ovation to a designated military person at the beginning of every Columbus Blue Jackets hockey game.  We applaud veterans in uniform when they walk through airports.  We give up our first class seats so that they may have a more comfortable ride home to their loved ones. Read more


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