The Blind Spot

I am a fan of the leadership teaching and writings of Dr. John Maxwell.  I recently reread a great article of his regarding “The Blind Spot”.  He began with the following definition.

The Blind Spot – An area in the lives of people in which they continually do not see themselves, or their situation, realistically.  This unawareness often causes great damage to the people and those around them.

It is true isn’t it?  We get so incredibly caught up in our own world that we cannot objectively see our own situation.  It is like we have blinders on regarding our own behavior and surroundings.  Have you ever heard someone say “Can’t they see what they are doing?” or “Don’t they know how they are being taken advantage of?”  It is easier to spot negative circumstances or behaviors in others than in ourselves.  The challenge is to look at ourselves and our situations as objectively as possibly.  It is much easier said than done.  It requires the relaxing of one’s defenses, and the willingness to be vulnerable.  But, it can help you avoid harm to yourself or your business as well as some potential embarrassment.  Think about it; are you aware of your blind spots?



Maybe it is my age, hopefully it is also the technological world we live in, but I have a hard time concentrating for an extended period of time.  There are too many distractions.  It’s incredible how quickly we learn of news events in this world of social media, smartphones and the internet.  Then there is the rest of the generally worthless information we can access immediately!  Interruptions are constantly available at our fingertips.  How important is it to overcome distractions and be able to focus?  It is critically important for success. 

Times may have changed in regards to how we access news and information and what we do with it.  One thing that has not changed is that results are all that matter.  If we are not producing results in our professional life we are not succeeding.  That is largely true at home as well.  Use your time wisely.  Do not let the distractions of our instant gratification world distract you.  

“The ability to concentrate and to use your time well is everything if you want to succeed in business; or almost anywhere else for that matter.”

-Lee Iacocca



Sixteen years ago on this date The United States of America was changed forever.  Those old enough will remember exactly where they were that morning.  The attack, now known simply by the date of its occurrence as 9/11, was nothing like this country had ever seen before, and hopefully will never again.  The images were horrifying and unforgettable.  We were unified as a country and we rallied together in the subsequent days, weeks and months.  Unfortunately I feel like a lot of that unity has faded away, but that is a story for a different day. 

Earlier this year I had the opportunity to visit the 9II Memorial & Museum in New York City.  It is a fascinating collection of stories and memorabilia located at the base of the Twin Towers.  I found it to be incredibly well done, powerful, but somber and reverent.  My granddaughter, who was not even born at the date of the attacks, was riveted.  She came home with an understanding, and true feel for that tragedy that she will never get from a textbook.  I encourage you to visit if you have the chance.

Take a moment today to recall the events of sixteen years ago.  Think about the lives lost.  Ponder the unity that grew out of tragedy.  Reflect on the actions of the first responders.  Consider where we are in the war on terror.  Ensure that the events of that day are not forgotten by the next generation.  Most of all be proud of the great country we live in and the freedom we enjoy.     


Proud to be a Houstonian, Proud to be a Texan

The greater Houston area, as well as most of the Texas coast and east Texas, have been ravaged by a storm of historic proportions over the last week.  The widespread devastation is unprecedented. 

The best in humanity can be seen in trying circumstances.  Our response as people caring for one another has been impressive.
  •   First responders and emergency personnel have risked their lives for others.
  •  The volunteer based Cajun navy has rescued thousands.
  •   Volunteers and donations at shelters and churches have been overwhelming.
  •   Neighboring communities and states have sent all forms of aid.
  •   Cities far and wide have shared nurses, emergency responders and supplies.
  •   People are showing up to clean up the homes of perfect strangers. 

But here is what impresses me the most…  None of these people see race or color when they show up to help.  Volunteers are not concerned with how someone voted; they just see people who are in need.  Ordinary people have gone to extraordinary lengths in order to help others, regardless of race, neighborhood, political party or job title.  Those impacted have not blamed the government.  We are not waiting on FEMA or crying for government assistance.  We are helping one another, rolling up our sleeves and working towards recovery.    

The national media has tried to divide us.  We have been asked to place blame.  Reporters have wanted us to suggest that the city or county could have done more.  It has been implied that poor decisions were made by our leaders.  As a people, we have stayed above that.  We have focused on the task at hand, helping others.  What I have seen is a sincere response from people out of love and caring, a deep desire to help this entire area through a horrific disaster.

We do not know how long this recovery will take, but we are off to an amazing start!  The outpouring of support and assistance will bring Houston back.  It makes me proud to be a Houstonian, proud to be a Texan.  #texasstrong