Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Would You Run From Someone Who is Infected?

I swear, if I hear the term "swine flu" or whatever the politically correct term for this darn thing one more time I'm going to go crazy! Never mind that more people will die on the nation's highways in the time it takes you to read this blog than will die from swine flu.

I spoke at a conference yesterday. One of the speakers couldn't attend because he had been exposed to the virus and was being quarantined. I asked the audience, "How many of you would run from this room if you KNEW that someone in here had swine flu?" All of the hands went up.

"How many of you would run from this room if there were people with equally as dangerous attitudes and beliefs?" A few people raised their hands, but most people looked confused. When there is some kind of illness that we have a very slight chance of catching, people take crazy precautions to avoid exposure. However, study after study has PROVEN that over time, people's attitudes will reflect those who they associate with. If people have a negative or "can't do" attitude, most of us have been conditioned to try and appease instead of convince them otherwise. It is easier to lower your expectations than to lift others up to your level. Guess what? You can make new friends, coaches, and mentors. Motivation takes work.

My challenge to you is that you get to know people who push themselves and those around them (in a good way). My coach, Kevin Bracy, told me something that will stick with me forever. He after a particularly grueling coaching session, he explained, "Shef, your friends love you for who you are. Your mentors love you too much to leave you where you're at."

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