Weekly Leadership Lifter

October 17, 2022

Years ago as a young man in Iowa I worked at a grocery store chain called HyVee. You might recognize that name, it was the same chain that Kurt Warner worked in before he rose to NFL fame. I stocked shelves, helped check people out, and brought carts in from the parking lot. It really wasn’t something I was passionate about, but it was a job and I needed a job to fund my hot rod addiction. Day in, day out, winter, spring, summer, fall, I would go through the same old motions, all the while wishing I was somewhere else. As time passed, I found myself complaining and griping about my tasks, and even dragging my feet a bit. My attitude and my outlook were full of negativity. 

 But one day that all changed. I overheard my manager speaking to some of my coworkers about a new opportunity for a managerial position. They were excited about all the new benefits, the increase in pay, and the leadership that came along with it. Then it happened, and to be honest it hit me like a ton of bricks. The manager said, "You know its too bad, Blunt probably could’ve gotten this promotion, but he’s just too negative. He complains about his work, doesn’t give his best, and really just slacks off with his responsibilities."

 At that moment, I had a decision to make. Was I going to be a victim and live up to what my manager said or was I going to take initiative and prove him wrong? I chose the latter. I made a quality decision at that moment that I was going to be the most positive, most detailed oriented, and hardest working employee in that entire store. I took responsibility and traded in my spirt of mediocrity for a spirit of EXCELLENCE and guess what? After a few weeks I received that promotion. 

 Earlier this week I was rereading a book titled, "The Fighter’s Mind" by Sam Sheridan. Its a book where the author interviews some of the greatest martial artists, MMA fighters, wrestlers, and boxers, in history to see what makes them tick. In one of the chapters is a quote by a Tai Chi master name Josh Waitzkin, that really stuck out to me and reminded me of the story I just shared with you. “We can never expect to touch EXCELLENCE if going through the motions is the normality of our lives. Everything is always on the line. The more present we are in practice, the more present we will be in competition.” 

I love that. "Everything is always on the line." Legendary leaders realize this. They understand that "everything matters." They don’t wait for game time to go at game speed or to give their best—they do it day in and day out. They set the tone, standards, and speed for their team and organization. Have a spirit of EXCELLENCE and watch your EXCELLENCE bring promotion and influence. 

"This Daniel was preferred above the presidents and princes, because an EXCELLENT spirit was in him; and the king thought to set him over the whole realm."
— Daniel 6:3

"Be a yardstick of quality. Some people aren’t used to an environment where EXCELLENCE is expected."
— Steve Jobs

"And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto me;" 
— Colossians 3:23

Book Recommendation:
The Fighter’s Mind by Sam Sheridan

The Fighter's Mind

God is For You!
Pastor David Blunt