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Mettle: (A quality of endurance and courage). This pandemic is testing us. It’s causing us to develop new skills. It’s causing us to try new things. It’s causing us to address issues that should have been addressed before. It’s causing us to address issues we didn’t know we had. It’s testing our character. We are concerned about aging parents in care facilities. We are concerned if the children in our households are getting the education […]

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I listen to a leadership expert named Tim Kight. He talks about the importance of pausing before responding to challenges and situations in the world. Pause. Gather yourself. Then respond. Reacting spontaneously has its risks. If you can pause, you ought to do so. Kight digs deeper, by describing three distinct types of pauses. 1. “Proactive” Pause. Take a proactive pause before a situation arises, considering beforehand how the situation may play out. Create an […]

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“People who believe in themselves do things that give them even more reason to believe. They adopt habits of mind that work over the long term.”- Jamil Zaki Do you believe in yourself? This is not a trick question. What struck me in Zaki’s quote above was the phrase “habits of mind.” If you’ve read my notes very long, you know I’m a fan of habits. I believe in identifying habits, because when performed, they […]

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What have you learned from the onset of this pandemic? I’m learning more each day. I won’t try to recount it all to you. I’ll do that over time. But, with every passing day, my awareness to what’s going on in the world is expanding To the extent the crisis first caused me to retreat inside and worry about the urgent, now I’ve grown more accustomed to the crisis and I am looking around a […]

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What stories do you tell about yourself? Michael Lewis is an author I admire. I’ve never read one of his books that I didn’t feel smarter, more informed, and more aware of the different ways to think about how the world works. Here are a few of his books: · Liars’ Poker, Moneyball · Think Fast Think Slow · The Fifth Risk · The Blind Side On a Tim Ferris Show podcast, Lewis was described […]

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What has the experience of living in a pandemic taught you? One observation is the “power of the individual.” On Sunday, I watched a 60 Minutes episode showing how Ford and General Motors have ramped up their companies to build ventilators. I also listened to a podcast where lifelong chimpanzee advocate Jane Goodall described her role as world educator and advocate. The takeaway from both of these efforts is to see how big things are […]

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Our minds can work in an “either/or” fashion, i.e.: Good/Bad Better/Worse Health/Sickness Richer/Poorer You get it. I look at such contrasts in a linear fashion. At one end is the area to which I aspire. At the other is the one I don’t. Chances are we are faced in one direction or the other. So, I was listening to a podcast – in reference to this “either/or” mindset. The former Surgeon General of the United […]

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“In crisis, leadership is not waiting, downplaying, deflecting, or justifying past actions. It’s acting swiftly, communicating openly, taking responsibility for past mistakes, and making adjustments to improve future decisions.” – Adam Grant 2008 was a crisis year for our company. The financial system was in collapse. Our revenues were dropping. Things were tough. Jerry Reavis was a founder of our company. He was an investor, a leader, and a board member. He was my friend […]

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There’s a saying: “If you’re a fish, you don’t know you’re wet.” It’s obvious. When you don’t know anything but swimming and being immersed, you are wet all the time. You don’t know what being dry is like. Wetness doesn’t even become a thing. It just is. I have a new grandson. Ace was born right before the virus took off. He sleeps, eats, secretes. It’s been awhile since I hung with a newborn and […]

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We are facing a “new normal.” Still not certain what that will be. Early in adulthood, I was exposed to the idea that life would be a series of transitions; one after the other. “Same old, same old” wasn’t a thing; continuing change, however, would be. The person who taught me that idea went further. He said, “If there is going to be constant change, we should have a “process” for addressing it; we should […]

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