Compete or Quit!

Former San Diego Chargers DB Antonio Cromartie

At this time of year hard core football fans are looking for any whiff of the pigskin to keep their appetite for the gridiron satiated. That’s one reason why the NFL Draft, which happened a few weeks, gets so much attention and publicity.

One of the most coveted positions that NFL teams look to draft are defensive backs (DB), the ones charged with covering the offensive players who are typically the fastest players on the field – wide receivers. This is one of the hardest positions to play in football because you have to defend against some of the best athletes in all of sports.

I remember playing DB growing up and it wasn’t always fun, because getting beat for a long touchdown pass by a wide receiver can be demoralizing. Nevertheless, one thing our coaches would always stress was, “compete on every play!” This meant trying your best every single play with no excuses. It didn’t matter how talented the other player was -or how untalented I wasn’t – I had a responsibility to fight, press, push, and anything else I could (within the rules) to keep the receiver from getting the ball. If I wasn’t going to compete on every play, my coach wasn’t going to let me play!

As I think about my football experience I can see how this DB mentality is very relevant to our daily lives. Here’s how…

  1. Give your best effort in every situation. Desire and effort often trump talent. Even if your technique isn’t right, at least give 110% effort. Semi-talented players who work and have good technique will beat out super-talented players who are lazy. Don’t be lazy with your talent and do everything you can to make up for the lack of it.
  2. Put yourself in a position to win. Practice your technique. Stay in shape. Learn as much as possible. Become the expert. When you’re doing the right things usually good things will happen for you.
  3. Have a short memory. DBs have to forget about the last play – whether good or bad, because the next one is coming. You can’t celebrate too long for something good or get down on yourself for something bad, because your team is still counting on you to do well in the future. Learn quickly and get ready to try again.

Everybody has an excuse for why they don’t put forth their best efforts. Unfortunately, excuses are like armpits – everybody has them and they all stink!

In life you have to play hard and you have to play to win… or you might as well not play.

Thrive on Purpose,
Paul Wilson, Jr.

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Powerful insights and practical tools for the unemployed, underemployed, and misemployed…

3hrive 3.0 happens Saturday, May 22nd. Click here for more info.

Who’s In Your Power Corner?

The sports world has seen some incredibly gifted boxers over the past 100 years, such as James J. Braddock, Roberto Duran, Manny Pacquiao, Sugar Ray Leonard, Sugar Ray Robinson, Joe Louis, and of course the greatest of all time, Muhammad Ali. These championship fighters were a marvel in the “squared circle” with their skill, speed, and power.

Yet no matter how great they were in the ring, they didn’t fight alone. All of them had a team of people who were ready, willing, and able to provide encouragement, coaching, and care. Every championship boxer typically has at least three people in their corner for every fight:

  1. Trainer: Gives advice to the boxer on what he is doing wrong as well as encouraging him if he is losing. They remind the boxer during the fight of what they practiced during training sessions leading up to the fight. They point out weaknesses of the opponent and what the fighter can exploit to gain an advantage. They creatively and assertively push the fighter to go beyond what they may be feeling. Trainers help them get the most out of their natural talents.
  2. Cut Man: Every fighter understands they are going to get hit and potentially hurt. A cut man takes care of cuts between rounds to get the fighter ready for the next round. The cut man is invaluable to help them bounce back quickly from their injuries.
  3. Assistant Trainer: Provides support to the rest of the team by doing some of everything. They do the little things that often get overlooked or ignored. They supply much needed assistance with timely words or actions. They often don’t demand attention but they deserve a lot of credit, because they take care of certain things so you don’t have to.

We need people who can help us maximize our talents and skills, as well as influence us to go beyond where we want to stop. We need to have at least one person in our corner to help us bounce back quickly from our inevitable hurts and disappointments. We also need those invaluable people who may not often be seen or heard, but when we do it’s the right thing at the right time.

Every day you are in the fight of your life to fulfill your purpose and potential. No matter how good you are at what you do, you won’t achieve significant levels of success without a formal or informal team of people who support, encourage, comfort, mentor, train, and care for you.

Don’t try to be a solo act or “lone ranger”. You will only make it so far. Instead, rely on a “power corner” to help propel you to championship victories.

Who’s in your power corner? Whose power corner are you in?

Sweet dreams,
Paul Wilson, Jr.

*Note: ESPN has an interesting list of their 50 greatest fighters of all-time. Do you agree with their picks?

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Powerful insights and practical tools for the unemployed, underemployed, and misemployed…

3hrive 3.0 happens Saturday, May 22nd. Click here for more info.

6 BIG Dream Lessons from Cinderella Man

A couple nights ago I watched Cinderella Man with Russell Crowe for the first time (yeah, I know it came out 5 years ago). Especially considering the economic times that we currently live in, it was a truly empowering story of resilience, perseverance, courage, humility, and dignity in the face of overwhelming personal and financial challenges.

If you don’t already know, this movie was based on the true story of boxer James J. Braddock during the Great Depression. After injuries and age derailed a successful boxing career, prompting the boxing commission to revoke his license, he and his family fell on really hard times. With work hard to come by, he had to go on public assistance and almost lost his house and family. After two years out of the sport, a lucky break allowed him to get back into boxing on a one-fight deal, and he eventually ascended all the way to become  a most unlikely heavyweight champion of world. Joe Louis, one of the greatest boxers of all time, said Braddock was “the most courageous fighter I ever fought.

Here are 6 BIG Dream lessons that I gleaned from the movie…

  1. Your ultimate purpose is bigger than an individual goal – Fighting for a world championship is great. Fighting for your family is greater. His ultimate dream was to give his wife and three children a great life.
  2. Turn what’s broken into your benefit – Breaking his right hand allowed his left hand to get stronger so that when he made his comeback, he was a more complete boxer who could punch hard with both hands.
  3. Always remember what you’re fighting for – One of the best lines in the movie came when a reporter asked Braddock before the world championship fight what was his motivation for fighting. Braddock’s simple but profound answer was, “Milk.” The simple things in life can often be our biggest motivators.
  4. Stick to what you know best – He approached his profession seriously and was extremely confident – not cocky – in his skills. He worked hard to be the best and never quit. In all his fights he was never knocked out.
  5. Use where you come from to push you where you’re going – During his successful comeback, he always remembered what it was like to have nothing. He stayed humble throughout his ascension, because he realized how close he had come to losing everything and how easily he could fall back into that place.
  6. Stay focused on your family – No matter how difficult your life gets, never lose focus on the ones who are closest to you.

Don’t allow your challenges to cancel your dreams. If you want help turning your tragedy into triumph, join me at the Dream B.I.G. in 3D Live! Workshop on Saturday, April 17 in Marietta, GA. Click here to learn more.

What did you think about these points? How have you been able to overcome your challenges to pursue your dreams?

Sweet dreams,
Paul Wilson, Jr.

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Dare to dream again in 2010!

Register for the Dream B.I.G in 3D Live Workshop! on April 17, 2010For more details please visit www.PaulWilsonJr.com


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Celebrate Your Inner Underdog!

“Championship teams are birthed from Championship DREAMS!”

You have to see the champion inside of you before the champion can come out of you. I explain more in the video…

Sweet dreams,
Paul Wilson, Jr.

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Dare to dream again in 2010!

Register for the Dream B.I.G in 3D Live Experience! on April 17, 2010For more details please visit www.PaulWilsonJr.com


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From Chumps to Champs!

Of course by now everyone (or at least 100 million of us) knows the New Orleans Saints won the Super Bowl yesterday. It was definitely an exciting outcome for the city of New Orleans and the team’s fans all around the world. After so much heartache and turmoil over the past few years, much of it due to its challenging recovery from Hurricane Katrina, the city and region can finally celebrate a collective victory.

It seemed like the bandwagon for the Saints got bigger as their success continued to build throughout the season, which is rare because success is not something this team is accustomed to. Did you know that in its 42 years of existence, this franchise has won only 42.5% of its games? Did you know it took them 20 years to have their first-ever season to win more games than they lost? Did you know they have a winning record against only 6 out of 32 NFL teams? Did you know that they won more playoff games this year (3) than they had in their entire previous history (2)? In fact their nickname used to be the “Aints“. (Source: Wikipedia)

This team was definitely not an overnight success. They (along with this deeply-emotionally-attached region) have had 42 years of frustrating futility: embarrassing defeats, deep disappointments, crushed expectations, and lots of “let’s try again next year“.Yet after all this team and city has been through, they can finally say they are World Champions.

It’s never too late to pursue your dreams, whether it’s been 4 years or 40 years. Don’t allow your disappointments and defeats to deter you from your destiny. There is a champion inside of you ready to win. Keep praying, keep believing, keep pursuing, and keep trusting God that your championship celebration will come!

Sweet dreams,
Paul Wilson, Jr.

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Dare to dream again in 2010!

Register for the Dream B.I.G in 3D Live Experience! on April 17, 2010For more details please visit www.PaulWilsonJr.com


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No Legs, No Sight, No Problem!

If you look around there is always someone that is worse off than you. If you keep looking there are others who are MUCH worse off than you. So what do you really have to complain about?

Complaining is a cancerous attitude. It slowly kills your faith, hopes, and dreams from the inside out.

Check out this incredibly inspirational story of two young high schoolers who refuse to complain about their situations or be denied their hopes and dreams. Instead they work together to encourage and energize one another to achieve seemingly improbable goals.

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Dream B.I.G.,
Paul Wilson, Jr.

B.I.G. Dreams are coming to a mind near you very soon! www.DreamBIGin3D.com

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Powerful Lessons We Can Learn from Sports

In case you missed it, last week to coincide with Super Bowl Week, I highlighted some incredible sports stories with powerful life lessons that will inspire you to thrive no matter what challenges or circumstances that you encounter. Here’s the links to each of the stories:

Monday – Tony Dungy: Quiet Thriver

Tuesday – Conquering Giants: Thriving Leadership

Wednesday – Thriving Perseverance

Thursday – Super Legacy (my guest blog post at Chat Kafe)

Thursday – Team Hoyt: Thriving Commitment

Friday – Thriving Unity

Saturday – Thriving Pioneers of Change

Which of these stories impacted and inspired you? I would love to hear your feedback.

Thrive on Purpose,
Paul Wilson, Jr.

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Are you an OA?

Follow my conversations on twitter.com/pwilsonjr

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Thriving Pioneers of Change

“Super Thrive Week” Series

Whenever there are major cultural shifts in our society, there are always pioneering change agents who lead the charge. Athletes – some voluntarily and some involuntarily – have been at the forefront of the major changes in the United States when it comes to race relations. 

While it’s true that some of these athletes gravitated to more of an activist role as their fame increased, others were reluctantly pushed to the forefront because of their success in their field of play. In both cases their influence was initiated by the fact that they excelled at their specialty. This video chronicles some of the most influential athletes and major sports events over the past 75 years that have had an impact outside of sports.

 

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more about “Jeremy Schaap: The Final Hurdle – ESPN“, posted with vodpod

 

Becoming a pioneer of change does not always require you to step outside of your area of expertise or circle of influence. Although you may not be an athlete, when you excel at what you do, you will often be given a platform to influence change. In your field of play – where you live, work, play, and worship – opportunities exist for you to make a difference with your talents, resources, and relationships.

The question for you is: Are you willing to be a pioneer to champion change even if you don’t see the end results or get to experience the benefits of your efforts?

Well, whether you want it or not, your opportunity might be right around the corner. Get ready. Become the expert at what you do. Don’t miss your chance to make a difference.

Thrive on Purpose,
Paul Wilson, Jr.

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Are you an OA?

Follow my conversations on twitter.com/pwilsonjr

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Thriving Unity

“Super Thrive Week” Series

Unity within a team, business, or family is not truly tested until adversity arrives on the scene. Even when adversity is expected it may be hard to resist the temptation to buckle to its demands, quit, or retreat.

Back in 1958, the University of Buffalo football team had an incredible opportunity to have their unity tested. This is an awesome story. Watch what happened…

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Sometimes it’s easy to do the right thing when there’s no outside pressure or benefits for doing the wrong thing. However it can be a totally different story when something significant can be lost as a result of choosing the right thing to do. That’s why it’s always inspiring to see people stand up for one another, especially in situations when you think they might do otherwise.

Check out what happened to the University of Buffalo football team nearly 50 years later…

If conflict fosters intimacy, then at your company, on your teams and in your family, let your adversity bring you closer together, not tear you apart. You will all learn to value one another more and grow together, benefiting everyone in the long run.

Thrive on Purpose,
Paul Wilson, Jr.

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Are you an OA?

Follow my conversations on twitter.com/pwilsonjr

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Team Hoyt: Thriving Commitment

“Super Thrive Week” Series

The story of Team Hoyt was so widespread last year that the lessons extracted from this video are undeniable (although those lessons probably haven’t been applied as much as they have been admired). It’s a powerful testament to the commitment of a father to his son. He has sacrificed his own life to give his son the most adventurous and meaningful life possible.

One reason this story was so popular is that this level of self-sacrifice is rarely seen in our society today. Also, the fact that a sport was one of the key elements within this story allowed a lot of people to easily connect with it.

For someone to say, “I will die for you,” often carries with it the thought of a one-time, in-the-moment act of heroism. Usually firefighters, police officers, or soldiers come to mind. On the other hand, for someone to say, “I will live for you,” means that moment by moment and day by day decisions must be made with that other person in mind. To give up one’s life for another in death is no small feat. Unfortunately, what we often overlook and undervalue are those who commit themselves to improving the lives of  others on a daily basis. The truth is to commit one’s life to another day by day is no small feat either.

We need more everyday heroes – those who are living for the benefit of another – whether that person is a family member, friend, neighbor, or even someone who won’t be born until the next generation.

It’s powerfully enlightening that Dick Hoyt found a new life when he decided to sacrificially invest his life into his son. Who are you going to invest your life into?

Thrive on Purpose,
Paul Wilson, Jr.

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Are you an OA?

Follow my conversations on twitter.com/pwilsonjr

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