Goals

Some people are dentists because their parents were, or they were told it was lucrative, or their friends were, or they couldn’t become doctors. And some people are dentists because they love the career and the calling to help people. Which of them do you want to put a high speed drill in your mouth? Find a career that you’re passionate about and are great at (or can become great at). Use your own metrics for fulfillment, not someone else’s.


To Everything There Is A Season

We’ll shut down the pool today and they’ll come to close it tomorrow. It’s always a little sad, but fall brings vibrant colors and the winter some beautiful white snow (snow turned black quickly back in New Jersey). And we have vacations planned every month through March. Look at every day through the windshield, not the rear-view mirror. I already know where I’ve been. I want to choose where I’m going. (Yes, the title was a Simon and Garfunkel song, …


Grapefruit

When I was young and we were poor, we could afford grapefruit on a weekend for breakfast. My mother cut two in half, separated the flesh from the rind with a knife, and the three of us would eat the fruit with a spoon from the half grapefruit. When we were done, we’d hold it up and squeeze it so that the juice collected in our spoons. We did that until every drop was consumed. We need to squeeze life …



Dr. Livingston, I Presume?

We went to a cavernous store called REI yesterday to buy stuff for our Safari next month. They’re very nice folks, have a huge staff, and they’re actually a co-op. Suddenly, we’re members. The puddle jumper taking us from Johannesburg to the lodge at the Botswana border will only accept soft luggage and a maximum of 22 pounds per person. I bought clothes with a lot of pockets. It was amazing what they cater to in there, from kayaks to …


Creating Light

I ordered some har- to-find bulbs from lightbulbs.com. My designer insists on using installations created by elves in Albania. Because they’re used for all the hall ceiling units, three bulbs each, I ordered five boxes of three. Three of those boxes contained crushed bulbs on arrival. I called their customer service number. Someone came on the line within 30 seconds. She listened, apologized, and told me three replacement boxes would be shipped on the next business day. From now on, …


Vehicle Settings

As everything becomes more entwined with technology, it seems to me that there is a less and less “intuitive” aspect to it. Yet my cars’ instruction manuals in hard copy are hundreds of pages thick, and not very helpful (filled with thousands of warnings, such as, “Do not attempt to drive off a bridge when in gear.”). I’m waiting for my wife outside a store trying to restore the camera setting to the one I like, among a dozen choices, …


Can You Move the Ball?

I played varsity basketball and ran varsity track in high school. Track practice was simple—I was a sprinter, so I would run a quarter mile for stamina and 30 yards for speed. Then the race itself was over in ten seconds. I was a terrific shooter in basketball, but I hated the practice. I never did learn to dribble with my opposite hand, so I could never be a starting guard. I was fast and could shoot, but I couldn’t …


The Martial Arts of Language

Folks, I have an ebook in progress called The Martial Arts of Language. It’s $50, and here’s an excerpt: I’ve never heard of you. That because virtually all of my work comes through referrals. What other organizations have you worked with? I’m sorry, as you would be, all of my clients are confidential.  I’d like to talk to your references. I’m very sensitive about intruding on people’s time, so when we’re at the point of your considering a proposal, if …


Let’s Talk

The best way to address a business audience is as if you’re having a conversation with someone. Don’t “present.” Don’t be theatrical. Use humor, stories, and solid examples to support your points. Don’t stand in one place, move around. Smile. Take questions. (Can you imagine talking to a friend and saying, “Please hold your questions until later, if we have time.”) Don’t use PowerPoint, which is hackneyed and removes the focus from you. Don’t use handouts that divert attention. If …