NHL Story - Author & Speaker on High Performance Personal story about the Impact of Work Culture
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My First Cage: Leg Braces as a Child
It was not long after I started to stand that my family realized that there was something wrong with my legs. Doctors found that I had soft-tissue deformities twisting my legs and that my left kneecap was in two pieces. The decision to put me in leg braces must have been extremely difficult for my mother, but the choice was made and my first experience with confinement and being seen as crippled began.
No matter how young someone is, the experience of wearing leg braces has to affect who that person is and who they become. The key is that their support team maintains a belief system that is consistent and impenetrable. There is no place for negativity in this environment because it does not serve the patient.
The movie Forrest Gump nailed it with its portrayal of early life in leg braces. Forrest was confined by these metal structures and when he broke free from them running was not a chore; running was a pleasure-filled escape. Running allowed him to think and to sort things out. Running came naturally because of what he had to compare it to. Living with leg braces was a reality for me at 18 months. The theory at the time was that my situation would correct itself if my legs grew into the proper position and my kneecap fused together on its own. They did and it did, and I started running the day the braces came off.
When I had leg braces, virtually every adult told me that I could do it. Before you can achieve a goal, you need to set one. The next step is to believe you can achieve it. Wearing leg braces was a trauma, but that experience taught me to believe in myself.
Over time, I learned that it is helpful to surround myself with people who support my beliefs and have beliefs that I can support. Having this belief that I could succeed led me to put in the considerable effort necessary to leave my leg braces behind and master walking, running and skating. I later used this cultivated belief that through repetitive action I could achieve anything and I went on to master several sports and to recover from two major accidents.
We all have the ability to build belief in our self and give the gift of belief to another person. It is our own responsibility to learn why and how.
On a corporate leadership and management level, if you are not doing both, you are living in the land of the dying and you are most likely unaware of the damage you are doing to yourself and others.
If you are aware or if you feel there is room for improvement, give me a call and we can talk about the simple shift in perception required to do more with less, improve outcomes and increase profit. Tragically, the process simple.
See the entire story and video at my NEW Site www.DougSmithPerformance.com