Here's a repost of early Orrin Woodward that's absolutely touching. This is classic Woodward philosophy, learning from those with not only experience, but the fruit on the tree!
PS. Check out the links to Tim Marks, George Guzzardo and Dan Hawkins leadership blogs. More great information with a timely message!
I read a great short story by Steve Brunkhorst called Grandfather’s letter. What incredible nuggets it had for climbers in life! Steve’s points out that in order to climb from peak to peak—we must endure the valley between the mountains. It takes courage to step off the peak and descend into the valley in order to climb the higher peak on the horizon. I feel many of us have walked through a valley for the last 5 or 6 months and arestarting to ascend to another peak. This is the year to count your blessings, break camp and start the climb to the top! Enjoy this wonderful story and follow the advice of Grandfather’s letter.- Orrin Woodward
One day, a young man was cleaning out his late grandfather’s belongings when he came across a bright red envelope. Written on the front were the words, “To my grandson.” Recognizing his grandfather’s handwriting, the boy opened the envelope. A letter inside read:
Years ago you came to me for help. You said, “Grandpa, how is it that you’ve accomplished so much in your life? You’re still full of energy, and I’m already tired of struggling. How can I get that same enthusiasm that you’ve got?”
I didn’t know what to say to you then. But knowing my days are numbered, I figure that I owe you an answer. So here is what I believe.
I think a lot of it has to do with how a person looks at things. I call it ‘keeping your eyes wide open.’
First, realize that life is filled with surprises, but many are good ones. If you don’t keep watching for them, you’ll miss half the excitement. Expect to be thrilled once in a while, and you will be.
When you meet up with challenges, welcome them. They’ll leave you wiser, stronger, and more capable than you were the day before. When you make a mistake, be grateful for the things it taught you. Resolve to use that lesson to help you reach your goals.
And always follow the rules. Even the little ones. When you follow the rules, life works. If you think you ever really get by with breaking the rules, you’re only fooling yourself.
It’s also important to decide exactly what you want. Then keep your mind focused on it, and be prepared to receive it.
But be ready to end up in some new places too. As you grow with the years, you’ll be given bigger shoes to fill. So be ready for endings as well as challenging beginnings.
Sometimes we have to be brave enough to move from the familiar to the unfamiliar. Life isn’t just reaching peaks. Part of it is moving from one peak to the next. If you rest too long in between, you might be tempted to quit. Leave the past in the past. Climb the next mountain and enjoy the view.
Dump things that weigh you down emotionally and spiritually. When an old resentment, belief, or attitude becomes heavy, lighten your load. Shed those hurtful attitudes that slow you down and drain your energy.
Remember that your choices will create your successes and your failures. So consider all the pathways ahead, and decide which ones to follow. Then believe in yourself, get up, and get going.
And be sure to take breaks once in a while. They’ll give you a renewed commitment to your dreams and a cheerful, healthy perception of the things that matter the most to you.
Most important of all, never give up on yourself. The person that ends up a winner is the one who resolves to win. Give life everything you’ve got, and life will give its best back to you.