Find happiness in the chaos
Because of COVID-19, I gave a lot of thought to coaching high school soccer again. There are potential risks and exposure to the virus. Every day is full of risks. Just getting out of bed and going downstairs is a risk. Driving a car is a risk. We always need to take precautions like wearing a seatbelt or a mask. The alternative is to stay in bed. I’m coaching! This will be a challenging season because of the uncertainties with COVID and related rules. We can’t even guarantee we will play a game until it starts. This season will require mental toughness as well as the usual hard work, skills and teamwork. As a coach, hopefully I can help the boys to develop mental toughness.
One of the reasons I coach is the joy of helping boys grow into young men and learn to achieve their dreams. I remember the joy of watching the boys hoist our first state championship trophy. Tanner, was our goalkeeper. He was so short he had to a hard time touching the crossbar even when he jumped. Tanner’s heart, hard work and attitude made up for his lack of size. He won the starting goalkeepers job just before the playoffs started. When the championship game ended the paper took a picture of Tanner with both feet off the ground. We met on the field with tears of joy in our eyes. I told him, “You are a State Champion Keeper.” He went on to be a successful Army officer and attorney.
A few years ago, Lynnda and I were at the National Speakers Association Convention in Phoenix, Ariz. We were at the airport rental car facility. I gave my paperwork to the young man who would bring our rental car to us. He asked why we were in Phoenix. I told him we were there for a professional speakers’ conference. He excitedly responded, “I have always wanted to do that. Can you tell me one thing that will help me?” Then he dashed off to get our car.
No one had ever asked me that question. I had to think about it. By the time he returned with the car I told him, “Remember this, It’s not about you or your message, it’s all about the audience.” In my career when I took the focus off me or my organization’s needs and focused on the audience’s needs and concerns everything changed in a very positive way.
Success in business and sales, as a manager or owner happens when we put our customers’ needs ahead of ours. If we give our customers what they need and want first, we have a chance to get what we need. The late sales expert Zig Ziegler said, “You can have anything you want if you first help enough other people get what they want.” At Shale Crescent USA, our prospects have access to our hard data so a decision to come to our Region is easier. Local companies can use it to expand creating jobs our Region needs. We have a large network we can access, three studies we can give away for free and years of experience to help companies expand in our region.
Everyone is searching for happiness. As a child, I learned happiness isn’t about having stuff. Growing up I had 5 brothers. Our Dad worked for the government. We didn’t have a lot of “things” but we had our family and friends. We were happy. I believe it was because my parents kept us focused on what we had instead of what we didn’t. We complained because we only got one gift for Christmas. The only child down the street got more presents than all of us. My mother said, “There are six of you. You can play with each other. That is like having 6 toys.” Mom was right. The boy down the street was lonely. He never wanted us to go when we visited.
Happiness isn’t about acquiring things. I notice when I am happy other people are involved. A preacher recently suggested a different picture of hell. It wasn’t fire and brimstone. He said, “Hell is having and doing everything we want and realizing it doesn’t make us happy.” Happiness from stuff doesn’t last very long. What does our happiness have to do with focusing on the needs of others rather than our own and making a difference? I believe, a lot.
The late Earl Nightingale said, “Happiness is an inside job.” We get to decide how happy we are based not on what happens to us but how we choose to look at it. For some people, the lockdown was a big negative. For others, it was a time of opportunity to work on their business and grow closer to family. When I focus on helping others I find happiness. When I began coaching high school soccer, it wasn’t about money. We didn’t get paid. It was about giving back to the school that gave my kids a great education. I did not expect the amount of joy and happiness I received. The boys helped me to dream again. A gift important in the work I do for Shale Crescent USA.
What in your life gives you joy, especially now? Start with your spouse and family. What can you do to make them happy? In my marriage, I learned if I expected to be happy I needed to help Lynnda to be happy. What can you do to make the world a better place? One person can make a difference. Give your time, talent and money without expecting anything in return.
In these chaotic times people need joy and encouragement. They need to know people care about them. If we expect to be happy we need to first give joy and happiness to others. We all have the power to make a positive difference in the lives of others. Do it now!
Greg Kozera, email@example.com is the Director of Marketing and Sales for Shale Crescent USA. He is a professional engineer with a Masters in Environmental Engineering who has over 40 years’ experience in the energy industry. Greg is a leadership expert and the author of four books and numerous published articles.