Taking Chances – Why You Should Seize Your Moment

Some people have dreams for a very long time and dare to cling on to the hope that one day their opportunity may come, while others resign themselves to giving up on their dreams.

I love it when celebrities like the amazing Oprah Winfrey and the supremely talented Celine Dion use their fame to give other people an opportunity to shine a light on their special gifts.

I’ll be surprised if this You Tube video clip, introducing young Charice Pempengco doesn’t melt your heart.

The moral of the story – never give up on your dreams, especially when the realisation of them will bring joy to other people – keep the faith and keep working toward them. Then grab that opportunity when it comes along.

Reigniting your OOMPH!

Jo and Tony - mission accomplished!

Jo and Tony – mission accomplished!

When you find yourself feeling uninspired and not really bothered about doing the things you know you SHOULD be doing, what can you do about it?

I have to confess that I had the idea to write about this more than two weeks ago, but I have been ‘busy’ with other projects. So here I am -taking my own medicine!

What started me on this track was the fact that I was actually on a track when I noticed something that made me smile.

I was’ jogwalking’, mostly walking (owing to lack of training!), the Perth City to Surf Fun Run with my girlfriend, Jo and we were on the last click of the twelve kilometre event.

Despite the noise of people chatting and running, the distant sounds of bands playing, plus someone delivering very bad karaoke from a tent beside the course, I overheard some young voices from above.

We were passing through a very posh neighbourhood at City Beach and from the upstairs balcony of one of these mansions, I heard and saw two young children cheering encouragement to all of the runners, joggers and walkers.

I thought it really cool that these kids, who obviously came from a well-to-do family, would take the trouble to be so vocal in their encouragement of people whose legs were tired and who needed that last little lift of enthusiasm to help them finish the job in hand.

When I told Jo about it, she had noticed that the children actually had medals around their necks, which meant that they had already completed the course, and had gone back home, probably to show their medals excitedly to the family, where they had then assumed their lofty position from which they were doing a terrific job of lifting the spirits of us less fit individuals.

It was a bit like watching children of Roman nobles encouraging the gladiators in the arena!

I found it very uplifting though that they would take the trouble to be so supportive and enthusiastic and it was a fabulous moment among the many other human interest stories that were so wonderfully on display that day.

I’ve lost count but I think it was my ninth City to Surf, spanning about 27 years and I’ve seen it grow from about 4,000 participants to 45,000, with all of the extra categories to cater for huge fitness level differentials.

The Participants Gather

The Participants Gather

Legends Indeed - took it in turns to carry their baby!

Legends Indeed – took it in turns to carry their baby!

 

There were people with disabilities, parents carrying children, people in fancy dress, people of all ages, nationalities and body shapes.

Every single one of them had their own story of course, their own unique reason for why they had bothered to make the effort on that overcast August morning.

It’s your story that will make the difference in helping you find your OOMPH!

In my coaching and consulting work, when I come across business owners who are battling and feeling fatigued, lost or apprehensive about what they are doing, almost invariably they are taken aback when I ask them, ‘So, WHY are you doing this?’

It’s no surprise that the reason we sometimes lose our OOMPH is because we take our focus off the ‘Why?’.

When our ‘Why’ is strong and vividly imagined, our previously wavering enthusiasm can be easily reignited.

Studies done on prisoners of war showed clearly that the survivors were the ones who focused on their dreams and goals and on what they would do after the war had finished and they were free again.

The Human Race thrives on hope and optimism about the opportunities ahead of them and the perceived benefits or rewards for the effort involved. That’s perhaps why this race was such a great metaphor for understanding some of the many variables that can lift the human spirit.

If you take away hope, you take away a person’s purpose. Without purpose a person loses their motivation like Austin Powers losing his ‘mojo’.

That’s when it’s easy to become distracted and possibly even…PROCRASTINATE!

The dangers of losing your OOMPH!

The dangers of losing your OOMPH!

*Image shared by Amanda Templeman’s Facebook page, assumed to be public domain.

(Believed to be courtesy of Angela Liao, cartoonist)

So my message today is that if you have lost your OOMPH and you want to find it again, ask yourself again, ‘What do I want?’ and ‘WHY?’

It doesn’t all have to be about you by the way, it might be that you want something for a loved one. It could even be for a stranger?!

Those children on race day had finished their race, yet their obvious enthusiasm gave them enough OOMPH to share around to people they had never met.

The life lessons are all around us – we just have to notice them!

I’m so grateful that we live in such a fantastic place where these opportunities are available to us.

Until next time, whatever you’re doing, do it well 🙂

Tony Inman

Tony Inman

Tony Inman

 

 

 

“He kept me focused on achieving the goals…” – Kym Chomley, Sunshine Coast, Queensland

Kym Chomley – Director at Wishlist – Sunshine Coast Health Foundation

“Tony Inman has been my life coach for the past 10 months while I have been redesigning my career, lifestyle and personal life.

During this time he has successfully kept me focused on achieving the goals that I established both at the outset of the coaching and also as additional goals were identified.

His support, ability to cut to the core issues and highlight areas that I have yet to recognise and address have been invaluable during this time. I am delighted with my continued development.

 

Kym Chomley -Catalyst for personal, business and global change

Choose To Win Your ‘Game of Life’

Olympics Opening

The 30th Olympiad and the ‘Human Spirit’

Like many Australians this week I have been drawn to my television to watch some of the world’s greatest athletes push themselves to achieve results beyond what was previously thought possible.

The Games of the 30th Olympiad are in this day and age almost unavoidable, even if you are a person who bizarrely hates sport, which of course, I’m not.

I have played a myriad of sports in my lifetime, though not to any level that even approaches Olympic greatness, but I love it. I’m one of those reasonably good all-rounders.

At school though I could easily have been put off the whole idea…

Rather like the story of Tom Brown’s school days, my young primary school friends and I were mercilessly sent out into the snow and freezing rain, shivering in our skimpy singlets, our plimsoles being swallowed by particularly squelchy mud in the grassy green fields surrounding our Victoria College Preparatory School in Jersey, Channel Islands.

Those so-called cross-country runs are etched into my brain as stark reminders of the ‘tough love’ brand of education of yesteryear.

Nostalgia is a quirky thing though, because I now look back on those days and those experiences as ‘character-building’.

Unless you could prove you were dying of something like bubonic plague, the teachers accepted no excuses, and especially not inclement weather conditions!

For me it was like torture, yet for some gifted individuals it was their chance to shine.

Some children found that they had an unusual ability to gallop across those pastures, dodging the cow pats and leaping over barbed wire fences, somehow skipping across the muddy pools without sinking in, while others lost their shoes and socks in the quagmire.

These gazelle-like athletes blazed their way back to the school field and the comforting finish line, probably having time for a hot shower and a cuppa while I was still trying to navigate my way through the field with the bull in it!

It is in those moments of triumph where people like that find an ember of possibility, that maybe, just maybe, they could excel at that chosen sport.

Hockey was another of those sports invented by sadists, though they forgot one important detail in their grand design – that the freezing cold was your ally, because when your opponent’s stick slid up your stick and rapped you on the knuckles, you didn’t feel the pain. Well, not as much anyway, or at least until you had your hot shower and all of the bruising started to come out as the circulation returned to your almost-hypothermic body!

Anyway, back to my point – some of these people ignited a passion for a particular sport. In our house system, at our somewhat elite institution, competition was not only encouraged, it was demanded.

The will to win was instilled and people were trained to continually push the boundaries, so that those embers of possibility became burning cauldrons of desire and resolve.

We competed relentlessly with other schools, and with each other, and achievements were acknowledged at school assemblies.

The Human Connection in the Pursuit of Excellence

The Human Connection in the Pursuit of Excellence

So it is, with the Olympic athletes who grace our screens today. What you see is not the result of some hobby. Rather, it is the result of years of intense passion to achieve a dream, years of sacrifice, years of commitment, to strive to be the best in the world at whatever it is that they do.

That is what captures our interest and indeed our imagination, seeing in their faces the joy of victory or the agony of defeat. That saga, even at this extreme level of excellence is one to which we can all relate, even at our most basic and ordinary levels, for we ‘relatively average’ mortals also experience pleasure and pain in all of our endeavours.

It is in fact a globally televised magnification of the experience of being ‘human’.

Here is the interesting twist, however…

Each one of us has a choice in our lives. We can choose to at least strive for excellence, because even in falling short of that goal, we would probably still improve and grow from the effort.

Or we can choose to lead a life of quiet desperation – a life of ‘woulda, coulda, shoulda’s’ and ‘If only’s’.

We may not all be Gold Medallists, but we can all choose to be better, faster, braver – just a little better than last time, and in the effort we can all be winners.

The Winner is You if You Choose To Be One

The Winner is You if You Choose To Be One

We can also encourage each other, so that in those moments of doubt and uncertainty there is always someone to offer a helping hand, a kind word or a smile of support.

The Olympics are so inspirational because they remind us of the great qualities that lie within us all. Admittedly some people hide those qualities so well that you could be excused for thinking them absent, yet still they are there. They just need to be appreciated and uncovered.

So I say, ‘Enjoy the Games’ but remember also that the ‘Game of Life’ continues for us all, perhaps not with medals always up for grabs, but we can all still be winners at whatever we do.

Whether your game is to be a great athlete, or a boss, a mother, father, employee, spouse, whatever… You have the choice – the choice to settle for less, or the choice to strive for more.

I wish for you to choose wisely and to remember that everyone you encounter is fighting their own inner battle, so maybe they need a little kindness.

If you need any help at all in figuring out what’s next in Your ‘Game of Life’ and how to improve your chances of winning, please feel free to contact me.

Meanwhile, have a great week , soak up that Olympic spirit and enjoy the journey.

Tony Inman

Are You Willing to Do What it Takes?

leopard_changes_its_spots

As a Coach, I sometimes feel like the dry cleaner in this cartoon

I so often hear people saying they would really like to do something, or be something or have something, but within a few minutes you realise that for them, that elusive thing will only ever be a pipe dream.
That is of course, unless something changes…
Usually, the ‘something’ that needs to change is the person themselves.
Now some would argue of course the old saying that ‘A leopard can’t change its spots’.
Well even if your name is ‘Jackson’ and you’re a world famous singer, you can’t change the colour of your skin, but can you change your mindset?
The answer has to be ‘Yes’.
Barring physical impediments, the rule of thumb is that if someone else can learn to do a particular thing, you probably could too.
One of the key reasons why most people don’t succeed, is that they are quite simply not willing to do what it takes to achieve the result.
If you want to learn to play a guitar for example, you have to practice playing guitar. If you want to be great at it, you have to play til your fingers are sore. Then you keep on practicing despite the pain.

 

success is rarely overnight

success is rarely overnight

When the Beatles returned to England from Germany, they were billed as ‘the band from Germany that was an overnight success’.
In fact they were the band from Liverpool who took the opportunity to go to Germany and who played in seedy Hamburg bars until their fingers bled.
The reason why they were willing to do what other bands were not was that band leader, John Lennon later revealed their dream to be ‘the best band in the world’.
So they had a big dream, a compelling or burning desire in fact, but they were also willing to do what it takes.
Most people don’t even dare to dream, or they talk about their dream with a resigned ‘someday maybe’ attitude.

When I work with business clients, I only work with people who are willing to take action.
Here’s the take away: Whatever your dream, look at someone who’s done it and look at what they did. Study what they did and model what they did. If they did it, you probably can too.
What’s also pleasing is that even if you don’t quite make it, you usually end up coming across a better alternative opportunity than the ones you have now, and you can look yourself in the mirror, knowing that you ‘gave it a go.’

 

Teddy_Roosevelt

President Teddy Roosevelt -a gifted speaker

I’ll conclude with my all time favourite quote (so far). It’s from President Theodore Roosevelt.

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly; who errs and comes short again and again; because there is not effort without error and shortcomings; but who does actually strive to do the deed; who knows the great enthusiasm, the great devotion, who spends himself in a worthy cause, who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement and who at the worst, if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly. So that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat.”

On that, I challenge to build your dream and do what it takes to achieve it.
Until next time,
Tony Inman

This is Your Life – To Do With as You Wish

This-is-Your-Life

This-is-Your-Life

When I hear these four words, I always think of that TV programme – the one where a man in a suit pops out unexpectedly with a big red book in his hand and surprises some celebrity with the words…

“John (or Jane) Dough! You thought you were going to be doing blah, blah, blah tonight, but guess what -you’re not!!!

Instead, we’re taking you directly to our studio where your friends and family are waiting to celebrate your achievements, because tonight, John (or Jane) Dough -“This is Your Life”.

Then they spend the evening bringing out people from the person’s past, many of whom have not been in contact for years. I guess these days, with the advent of facebook and other social media, we tend to track down more of the people who helped us in our journey, than did previous generations.

 

Well anyway, here’s the thing, I’ve been preaching for some time, via my Perth coaching business, the importance of designing your life so that you get to live it the way you want it to be. If something’s not working or making you unhappy, change it!

I love the great Dr Wayne Dyer’s statement, that ‘We are not human beings having a spiritual experience, but rather, we are spiritual beings having a human experience’.

So when I saw this poster, presented as the Holstee Manifesto, I was compelled to share it with my friends, my family, my blog readers and my clients.

I’m not personally a great cyclist, having ‘progressed’ from bikes to motorbikes to cars, (now I’m back on a gym exercise bike so I’ve come full cycle!) but I love the way they have put together this video clip to get across the message.

Enjoy the clip.

Until next time, it’s goodbye from Tony Inman, who’s ‘Living the Dream’. I hope you are too.

Looking for Different & Improved Results?

Loral-Langemeier

Loral Langemeier

“If you want something new, you must do something different today.”

Loral Langemeier

From her book – ‘The Millionaire Maker’

 

I was fortunate enough to attend one of Loral’s seminars in September and WOW, is this lady powerful!

Loral pulls no punches in telling you that it is your responsibility to change your thinking and your behaviours if you want to achieve a better outcome in your world, especially your financial world!

The good thing though, is that she follows it up with some great advice on exactly how to do that.

If she is ever in your town, do yourself a favour – go and see her.

Touching Hearts by Making a Dream Come True

Jason McElwain

Jason McElwain

In February 2006, in a high school basketball game in New York, a coach and his protégé, a young man with autism, made history.

Not only did young Jason McElwain have autism, he was only 173cms tall, not really the height for a basketballer, so instead of playing for the team, he had become the Team Manager.

Basketball Coach, Jim Johnson, at the Greece Athena High School, decided to give young Jason a ‘fair go’ in the remaining few minutes of the last game of the season. He didn’t promise anything, but said he would try to at least let Jason on the court, just to experience the atmosphere of wearing the team jersey on court.

The Coach, all of the players and the other students in the audience, knew just how much this meant to Jason.

Did he seize his opportunity to live his dream?

What more can I say… just watch the video – you’ll be glad you did!

Then ask yourself, ‘Am I living the dream?’

Passion and Persistence – Tarantino

Quentin Tarantino

Quentin Tarantino - not an overnight success!

If you want an example of an overnight success, then don’t look at ‘Pulp Fiction’ Oscar winner, Quentin Tarantino.

Why? Because the Academy Award-winning Director was no such thing – he had a dream as a young man and he followed his passion with unremitting fervour.

Yesterday, I came down with a mystery bug that left me with barely enough energy to leave my bed in the morning and my couch in the afternoon. Thus, we spent a family evening at home and decided to watch a movie. My step-son, Troy hadn’t seen the movie, ‘Pulp Fiction’ and it had been a few years since we last watched the movie classic, so the decision was a no-brainer.

As a writer, I find myself analysing plot structures and subtleties on which other viewers might not ‘waste’ their time, but to me it’s extremely satisfying, and with his films I am captivated and intrigued.

We all enjoyed the movie immensely and laughed out loud at some of the dark humour, with me, who has seen it probably four or five times, laughing just as much as first time viewer, Troy.

Pulp Fiction

Pulp Fiction

Realising that this tenth anniversary DVD came with another disc full of extras, I sat spellbound this morning by in-depth interviews with an amazing cast of accomplished actors and of course, Director and Screenwriter, Quentin Tarantino.

Most people probably only heard of Tarantino when ‘Pulp Fiction’ took the world by storm, thus making him an ‘overnight success’.

As in most cases where these words are dropped in by the media, the man was no such thing.

For years, he had struggled as a ‘nobody’. Quentin joked that if you had sent a letter addressed to him at ‘The Outskirts of the Movie Industry’, he would have received it!

With a passion for movies at the core of his being, he had spent his childhood on self-study, of the great Directors. His encyclopaedic knowledge of movies, of themes, of plots, of genres, of techniques had earned him a job, working behind the counter in a video store.

On the weekends he would hire equipment, to gain the maximum benefit of the rental, and would work tirelessly from Friday night to Monday morning making what he himself described as ’embarassingly bad films’.

Inglorious Basterds

Inglorious Basterds with Brad Pitt

He shot hundreds of hours of movie footage and couldn’t afford the editing equipment to review it, until a considerable time later.

This was in effect his personal study programme – the apprenticeship that made him ready. The interviewer summed it up as a realisation that ‘everything you’ve learned in your life so far has prepared you for this moment’.

An incredibly talented expert, his  original screenplays were so compelling that one of the Producers of ‘Pulp Fiction’ was willing to take a chance on Quentin without having even seen his earlier work, including the lower budget hit, ‘Reservoir Dogs’.

As they say, ‘The rest is history’. The actors who have worked with him, which include a star-studded list of names like Samuel L Jackson, John Travolta, Uma Thurman, Harvey Keitel, Robert De Niro, Brad Pitt et al, proclaim that they would turn up to work with this guy in whatever starring, or cameo, role that he asked them to play. Such is their love of his work and his style.

The legend is now also a producer, cinematographer, director, screenwriter and cameo actor in a manner reminiscent of the great Alfred Hitchcock.

His screenplays are emotive and unconventional, especially with his love of altering timelines to tantalise an audience as his characters’ stories inter-weave or run concurrently.

Travolta & Jackson

Travolta & Jackson - Pulp Fiction

The dialogue is supremely realistic and believably commonplace, such as the scene where the two hit men in ‘Pulp Fiction’ are on their way to kill a drug dealer, who has wronged their boss. Travolta’s character, Vincent has just returned from Europe, so on the way in the car, he chats mundanely about the little things he has experienced, such as a cheeseburger being called a ‘Royale’, or the interpretation of the sexuality of a foot massage. The horrific nature of their job does not alter the humanity of their chit-chat on the way to work.

Quentin Tarantino’s acclaimed movies include: Reservoir Dogs (1992), Pulp Fiction (1994) – (yes it was that long ago!), Jackie Brown (1997), Kill Bill (2003 & 2004), Death Proof (2007), Inglorious Basterds (2009) and the upcoming feature, Django Unchained (2012).

Kill Bill

Kill Bill spawned a sequel

In his youth he was but a poor man, with no car and no money, working in a video store to make ends meet, and sleeping on a friend’s couch.

What he did have though was a dream,  as Tarantino himself puts it, “with no fall back plan”. He had a willingness to fail until one day he could earn a living doing the one thing that he really loved.

Whether you personally like his films or loathe them is immaterial, as the man is a rock star of his industry. Slightly eccentric without doubt, but a man to be admired for both his passion and his persistence, so thank you Quentin for sharing your gift with us all.

By the way, he also comes in on budget, because he wants ‘the people who believed in me to get their money back’.

The big question is, ‘What is YOUR passion? And are you following it?’

Until next time, think about what matters to you and seize the day!

Tenacity – an Inspirational Attribute!

Marion-Clignet

Marion-Clignet - World Champion despite Epilepsy

Last night I was very fortunate to attend a lecture from a lady who was nothing short of a revelation.

I have to confess to my ignorance of the sport of cycling, despite watching occasional clips of the Tour de France, that I had never previously heard of Marion Clignet. Yet when I read the invitation from WA Epilepsy Association head honcho, Suresh Rajan, I knew we were in for a treat.

Cyclist, Marion Cligny had been crowned World Champion six times, as well as double Olympic Silver Medalist, ten times French national champion and multiple USA champion, plus a world record breaker in a lengthy and illustrious career in the sport, all despite taking medication for epilepsy.

The audience was obviously in immediate rapport with Marion because most of them either suffered the effects of epilepsy, or their lives had been touched by a connection with someone else who has the ‘condition’.

Nevertheless, it is fair to say that even a person who couldn’t care less about the topic would have been moved by Marion’s inspirational tenacity to overcome any obstacle put before her.

Rejected by the American National Team on the grounds that her having epilepsy might prove a hazard to her teammates, thus effectively discriminated against, Marion accepted an invitation to race for France, courtesy of her French parentage.

Marion also overcame discrimination against her gender in that women do not enjoy anywhere near the level of sponsorship or support as men do, in her chosen sport.

Now effectively retired from competing at the top level, (she just does triathlons for fun!) Marion revealed how a person with epilepsy can suffer a seizure anywhere, anytime. She explained the absurdity with which first aiders can be trained in how to help people who have suffered heart attacks, and have defribulators often readily available, yet the vast majority of the population have no idea what to do if someone has a seizure, nor is emergency medication readily available!

The message from Marion Clignet was delivered in a witty, spellbinding, yet forthright manner – that ‘those who face major adversities can realise their dreams and ambitions and that actually having these hurdles can often become the driving motivation behind their successes.’

In her book, ‘Tenacious’ with Benjamin C Hovey, she concludes, simply yet from the heart, “Where there’s a will, there’s a way”.

Marion Clignet - an inspiration to us all

Marion Clignet - an Inspiration to Us All

“Where there’s a will, there’s a way”.
Marion Clignet


Cycling World Champion

Champion of the Cause of Spreading Awareness of Epilepsy

 

 

This poses the obvious question – If Marion can be a World Champion, despite suffering seizures, can’t the rest of us also  ‘Ride faster, harder and with a smile’? – Thanks Marion 🙂

Further information about epilepsy can be obtained from:

Mr Suresh Rajan – Executive Officer

Epilepsy Association of Western Australia

P: (08) 93467699       F: (08)93467696 E: epilepsy@cnswa.com

The Niche Suite B, 11 Aberdare Road, Nedlands WA 6009