Archive for May, 2011


just plane wisdom

On a recent fight, I had the pleasure of being upgraded to first class and sitting next to an entrepreneur, who was a voracious reader and leadership junkie. He had been a lawyer, a restaurateur, and was now a consultant.  He told me to look around the first-class cabin and take note of how many of the passengers were reading books. Of the 11 out of 12 seats occupied, 10 were reading business or leadership books.

He said he had noticed this phenomenon on many flights. After all, who sits in first class? Business leaders whose oversight and expertise are in demand across the globe; hence the frequent-flyer miles and upgrades to first class. He said that he doesn’t see such a high proportion of readers when he flies coach. Folks tend to listen to tunes, nap, browse the SkyMall catalogue, or do the crossword puzzle in the airline magazine. I made a conscious decision to pay attention during my two coach-class return legs and noticed the same thing. There were readers in coach but, proportionately, the percentage was much lower than my first-class sample.

He was on to something so simple, yet so brilliant! Even a one-hour flight is a chance for a much needed break in the daily communication barrage inundating us every waking moment. It’s a respite from the noise and a chance to turn it all off, per FAA regulations of course! So why not take this great opportunity to concentrate on something as simple as reading transformational material?

So what are you waiting for? On your next flight take the chance to get some tremendous reading material in hand and permanently upgrade your status to first class!


let’s do it doggie style!

The divine canine is my hero and muse. This past January, after 10 years of living in solitude and bliss with three cats and my soul-dog, Mr. Blue, I introduced a new adoptee into our pack. Ruby Red was a six-year-old Aussie purebred whose previous life was spent as a breeding dog in Kentucky.

I voraciously read how to introduce a new dog into the mix. She was cat-approved: Check! The existing male dog approved: Check! Let the dogs meet on neutral turf before introducing into the home: Check!

By day three, however, the novelty had worn off and the quest for dominance erupted. They had to establish their own “barking” order, which they did with much snarling and snapping, but without, thankfully, bloodshed or trips to the vet’s office.

Fast-forward to the present day: Mr. Blue and Ruby Red have worked through their issues and have actually become quite chummy. The entire household knows that Mr. Blue is the number-one son, but he allows Ruby Red to be her vocal, bossy self. I even see them wrestle a little, assume the same napping positions, communicate by making the same shepherd sounds, and even give each other little kisses on the muzzle when they pass. Each day they become more and more alike and comfortable, like an old married couple who intimately knows each other’s routines and thoughts.

So why do so many humans behave in the opposite fashion? We meet, fall into the gooey honeymoon phase, and eventually get married only to become disenchanted and spend the rest of our years becoming more and more hostile to one another. Humans are on an exact opposite trajectory than hounds!

We misrepresent and hide our true aggressions until we eventually let the snarling truth come out when we are inextricably, legally, and morally linked. If we tried to be more guileless and honest, we wouldn’t be less than forthright. We wouldn’t try to change one another. And our lives would be full of a lot more unconditional puppy love.

We need to take a lesson from man’s best friend and learn how to lay it all on the table within the first few meetings. Display right from the beginning our motives and temperament. Define our boundaries and who we are and demand respect. After all, everything surfaces eventually; the sooner the better. Ruff said.


you are the moonshine of my life

Why does the Sun get all the favorable press? We turn our faces to the Sun, bask in its glory, and let our skins turn different shades to honor its far reaching, transformative powers. Let the Sun Shine In, You Are the Sunshine of My Life, Walking on Sunshine. Many times we feel we have to be the center of the solar system in order to have an impact on someone or something; but let’s not forget that we can have an equally powerfully, yet much more subtle impact as well.

The effects of the Moon are seen in the rhythmic and periodic rising and falling of the tides. While it may not move physical masses of land, its effects are clearly seen in the fluidity of water.  So while we may not feel that we are having an impact on moving an organization or person towards a particular goal, never forget the influence you can have by providing subtle pulls at the more fluid aspects of change, attitudes and perceptions.

Never underestimate the power of your influence in shaping another’s life. Just because you may not hold a prominent position in their universe doesn’t mean that you can’t have as important of an impact. And when you feel that you are not having a visible impact, never forget that your words and actions can have a strong influence on their emotions and ideas. When leaders name their heroes or mentors, the seasoned ones have a very long list. That’s because they know from experience that some played a more visible role, while others had a more subtle one. Some may have given them the opportunity of a lifetime, but others may have said one word at the right time that changed the course of their history. All are equally important in helping that person become who they are today.

Never underestimate the power you can have on an individual’s or organization’s existence. Whether you are in the spotlight, or subtly orbiting around the perimeter with more hidden influences, it’s all good.

Tremendous Tracey

CEO Tremendous Life Books. Book Evangelist

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May 2011

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