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Monday, August 26, 2013

My Journey with The Coach

Hello there

Jim, thanks AGAIN for your reminder to post my blog today. You are officially in charge of holding me accountable. I hope I did good today lol.

It's been such a joy raising our daughter. Everyday she surprises us with new stuff. Now she is speaking one word. She started two days ago. Do you know what that word is? I was glad when I heard it. She learned to say "Thank you". Whenever you give her something, she makes sure to say thank you (it's exactly what I always do when people invite me to...eat).

I was talking about it with my wife yesterday, and we came up with the same conclusion. It is not by chance that Skylar is saying the words thank you. You see, a couple of months ago, my wife came up with this brilliant idea. Everyday, before going to sleep, each one of us has to say what we are thankful for. At first it seemed to be redundant, as we were coming up with the same list day in day out, but after a while it became deeper and deeper. I have to confess. Two days ago, I even broke into tears when I remembered what we had to overcome and where we are today. I can guarantee you, we don't take things for granted anymore.

I heard someone say that energy flows where attention goes. Our attention has been focussed on what we are thankful for, and each day there is something good happening. Of course there are times that we bump into challenges, but we do not give them energy. No wonder Skylar's new word is...Thank you. I am really looking forward to the day she is going to say "Thank You God".

Anyway...

I just finished reading Phil Jackson's new book "Eleven Rings..". For non Basketball fans, Phil Jackson is the coach who won 11 NBA championships, 6 with Michael Jordan's Chicago Bulls, and 5 with Kobe Bryant's Los Angeles Lakers. He holds the record of the most championships as a coach.

I have been following the NBA for many years (my wife just forbidden me to write how many years...It's just crazy). Most of the things Phil was talking about were not strange to me. But it was so great to learn what was happening behind the scenes, and how he was able to manage big egos like Jordan, Kobe, Shaq..., and especially how he dealt with, let just say, unpredictable players such as Dennis Rodman and Ron Artest aka Metta World Peace.

I learned so much from the coach mostly about leadership and selflessness. There is a part in the book where he mentioned that a young Kobe Bryant asked him to make him the team co-captain. He just looked him in the eyes and told him that no one can be a leader when nobody wants to follow him. Kobe had to change a lot before Phil could trust him to be a leader.

I also learned from him what he did to master his emotions. This guy is incredible. The world could be upside down, everything crumbling around him, he never panics. That's why they called him "The Zen Master". Basically, what he said is that anything that can potentially affect us emotionally is simple a test. Are we willing to pass the test and keep our cool no matter what? That is what I am learning. Would you join me in this journey? I hope so.

Moral of the story? Do you want to learn from a great coach? Just say thank you and you will read a great book.

Always a pleasure
Patrick
The Jouneyman.
www.unleashedpossibilities.net
 

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

My Journey to a Football Game

When Jim told me that there would be a lot of people at The Taste of the Danforth Greek Food festival, I thought he was joking. I thought the entire city was at the festival. It was fun, it was hot and the food was....You know me. In matters of food, only the quantity matters. Unfortunately we had to leave early as Skylar could not handle the heat. We had fun though.

Talking about Jim, last week he called me and asked me this question: Do you know a guy named Mitch? I had to admit that it was the first time hearing that name. Jim then told me that Mitch called him to ask if he knew a guy named Patrick Bizindavyi. Of course Jim knows me. As it turned out, Mitch works for the Toronto Argonauts. For those of you who have no clue of what I am talking about, the Toronto Argonauts are the 2012-2013 champions of the Canadian Football League (I am talking about American Football).

Long story short, the Argonauts are putting together an event for entrepreneurs on September 3rd at their stadium just before their game against Montreal, and they were looking for 3 speakers for the event. Guess what! I am speaking at the event. I am REALLY looking forward to the opportunity.
The only question I had for Jim was to know how Mitch knew my name. As it turned out, he is working with Lawrence (another friend of mine) who had invited me several months ago to speak at his event in Newmarket. I guess I made a good impression on Lawrence. This is really good stuff.

This whole experience reminded me of my Basketball coaching years. In 1999, we won our first championship (after trying for many years). The way the championship came together is an event that will stay forever in my memory.

We won every single game except against the reigning champions. That defeat was crucial for us. We knew there was no other team that could beat them. On the last day of the season, we were playing a quite inferior team and we knew we would beat them. It was just a formality to finish the season, knowing that the championship had escaped us.

Towards the end of the game, we heard a huge commotion coming from the other side of the court. We had to stop the game to figure out what was going on. To our surprise, it was several people who were coming from another game happening at another court. We didn't know that there was another game that day. Guess what! The team that was supposed to win the championship that season was playing against an inferior team, and.....they lost. Are you kidding me!? Their defeat made us the automatic champions for that season. They thought they would be cruising to victory. Surprise surprise! They lost.

We had worked so hard for years, we deserved to win the championship, but there was no hope for us. Guess what! It ain't over until it's over. We won the championship that year, and the next 2 years as well.

Why am I telling you this story? Just to let you know that, when you have worked so hard and don't seem to go to the next level, just keep the faith. There is something happening at a level that you don't see yet (like the game that was happening at another court that resulted in us winning the championship). At the right time, things will come together for you. I was minding my own business without knowing that the Argonauts were looking for a speaker and that my name was in discussion. What did I do to deserve this? Nothing except that Lawrence was looking for a speaker  several months ago in Newmarket and I showed up. The rest is history.

Moral of the story? Do you want to speak at a stadium? Just coach Basketball and you will eat at a Greek food festival.

Always a pleasure
Patrick
The Journeyman

 

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

My Journey to Our Wedding Anniversary

It's hard to believe it's been two years that I am married. Time went REALLY fast.

Yes, today is our wedding anniversary, and in a few hours, it will be my wife's birthday. How can you celebrate all of that? As I was thinking about it, my friend Jim called me to invite us to the Taste of the Danforth Food Festival. Did you mention food? I am all in

I am also celebrating 200 posts with my blog. Actually, this is my 201st one. It's been a fun ride, even though I must admit, sometimes it was hard to write anything. I tried to keep the course most of the time, and when I missed a week or two, I had friends (and I am not mentioning you Jim) who reminded me of my commitment.

To tell the truth, I did not think that this blog would last four years. I thought I would lack the inspiration. Amazingly enough, here I am, over 200 post later, still writing.

Sometimes, the inspiration came to me in a very unusual way. This is the case of this week. Do you want to know what happened? I will tell you if you insist.

Have you ever let your bedroom get messy a bit? It doesn't happen overnight, but after a while it becomes unbearable (maybe this is TMI lol).
That what happened last week. I had to do something.

As I started to work, I had first to turn everything upside down before I could arrange the room again. If someone would have come in the room, he would have given me a slap in the face for the big mess I caused. However, half an our later, the room was spotless (I got a standing ovation from my wife).

That is when it hit me. I said to myself: "I got the idea for my next blog". Do you want to hear the idea? Here it is:

Sometimes, it happens that we see something we need to change in our lives (the room being a little bit messy). Then comes a time when we have enough. Something got to be done (clean the room). Once we start working on it, it gets worse at first (the room being upside down) before the real change happens (the room being spotless).

Don't you think that this is a good story? Please agree with me, otherwise I would be really disappointed if you didn't.

So, if your life seems to be upside down, don't worry. It is a sign that there is work that is being done, very soon you will be spotless. Just keep the faith.

That is my two cents..

Moral of the story? Do you want to have real change in your life? Just clean your room and you will be invited at a food festival

Always a pleasure

Patrick
The Journeyman