Saturday, December 18, 2010


Yes, it's true.  After nearly 8 months I'm writing another blog post.  Perhaps this is the beginning of a new phase of blog posting. 

In recent days I was given some advice from someone who holds some executive influence over my career.  The positive advice was well received.  As I drove home, though, I started to think more about the advice given and I had, how shall I say it, an epiphany -- the advice given was merely an opinion of what one person thought I could improve. 

As I continued my drive I turned on Jon Schmidt to help me think clearer.  The advice I was given was I needed to improve on my leadership capabilities and I needed to improve effective communication.  Like I said this advice was correct.  I do need to work on on improving these skills.

So why was I spending so much time thinking about these opinions? 

I reflected on my life and realized that I've let opinions control me.  Let me explain.  I know I am in control of myself.  No one can control me.  I live by sound principles; however, I also take what other people say seriously.  I've always looked to know what someone else thinks before I make my own opinion.  I don't think this is necessarily wrong but if all my actions are dependent on what someone else thinks then I'm really not acting for myself.

In recent days I finished listening to an audiobook called "The Last Lecture" by Randy Pausch.  Randy was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and was told he only had 3-6 months to live.  Randy is an inspiration as while most people would probably have spent the last months of their lives wallowing in their self-pity and asking God why did this happen to them, Randy did things differently.  He took control of his life, like he had his entire life, and made sure his wife and his kids knew of his love, and worked hard at leaving a living legacy.

This was pretty influential for me as he gives quite a a bit of advice, or opinions, about how others should act.  One of the bits of advise he gives is regarding brick walls.  There is a metaphor comparing obstacles and brick walls.  All of us have brick walls impeding us from accomplishing our dreams.  For most, the brick wall succeeds.  Randy taught that brickwalls are made to show just how hard you'll work to get over them.

Opinions are everywhere and I certainly can't escape from people giving me their opinions about life, work, entertainment, and the other half a million things that go on in my daily life.  What I can do is control what I allow to influence me.  Remember -- I control myself.  I make my own decisions. 
How has this led me to do a new blog post?  I've wanted for many years to be a writer.  I've been my own brickwall.  I've looked to the Internet for advice on how I can become a writer.  The internet "opinions" fed me with fear that I didn't have the capabilities to do this.

I decided in the car that day that I will become a writer and the first step is writing.  And once I began to write I'll see ways to improve my skills and will research the best books of wisdom to teach me how to improve. 

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