April 16, 2013
Back in 2006, my Goal-Free Living book was published by Wiley, and I was feeling quite proud. Later that same year, after giving a speech in Los Angeles, I drove up to Santa Barbara to attend a conference, arriving just in time for lunch.
While standing in the line for the buffet, I turned around and said hi to the guy next to me.
He told me his name was George. He then asked me what I did.
Given my new book and the success of my speech earlier that day, I said with a bit of swagger, “I’m an author and professional speaker.” I was feeling very good about myself.
I asked George, “What do you do?”
He replied nonchalantly, “Oh, I’ve done a bit of television.”
He said it so matter-of-factly, that I assumed he had a small role in television. Maybe he had done a couple of commercials. Or possibly he did some voiceover work; he certainly had the voice for it. Or maybe he once had a “bit” part in a minor show.
He then proceeded to ask me about my book and the work I do, and I gladly shared my life story.
When I sat down at my table to eat, not with George, I looked at the agenda of speakers for the conference.
I was humbled when I realized that the person I was standing next to in the buffet line was speaking later that day. He was none other than George Takei.
At that moment, I realized that truly confident, successful, and impressive individuals do not need to boast. They don’t need to be the center of attention. Instead, they make others feel good about themselves. They ask good questions and are interested in others.
After that embarrassing moment, I have done my best to do what George did with me. Instead of attempting to convince the world of how great I am, I try to bring out the greatness in others. When I am at a conference, I do my best to make others the centers of conversation.
The next time you are with a group, spend more asking questions and listening than talking. Spend more time promoting others than promoting yourself.
As I learned from George, the most powerful people make others feel like a super star.
P.S. I ended up spending about 90 minutes with George. He truly is one of the nicest people I have ever met. He even asked for a copy of my Goal-Free Living book, which I gladly signed and sent. The picture below is what he sent me, to thank me for my book. He is a class act!
March 15, 2013
Today’s Friday Fun Fact…
St. Patty’s Day is right around the corner. It’s time to break out the corned beef and cabbage – that is assuming that you are not too full from eating pie this past Thursday. Wednesday, March 14th was Worldwide Pi Day. And while we may celebrate this auspicious occasion by consuming our favorite home baked delights, this holiday has little to do with those edible creations.
In March of 2009, the House of Representatives designated March 14 (3/14) as worldwide “Pi Day” to encourage the study of Pi and highlight the importance of math and science education programs.
According to www.piday.org, “Pi (Greek letter “?”) is the symbol used in mathematics to represent a constant — the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter — which is approximately 3.14159. Pi has been calculated to over one trillion digits beyond its decimal point. As an irrational and transcendental number, it will continue infinitely without repetition or pattern.”
While 3/14 is a fitting day to celebrate this mathematical wonder, coincidentally it also falls on the birthday of the great physicists, Albert Einstein, who was born in 1879.
If Pi (or pie) is not your thing – don’t worry. According to thenibble.com, in March alone, there are plenty of other nationally recognized holidays that can tempt your taste buds.
For meat lovers we have National “Cold Cut Day on the 3rd and National Meatball Day on the 9th. For our vegetarian friends, we have Spinach Day on the 26th and National Artichoke Day on the 16th. For the snackers amongst us, enjoy Popcorn Lovers Day or National Potato Chip Day (also on March 14th) or my personal favorite, Cheese Doodle Day on March 5th.
March 8, 2013
Today’s Friday Fun Fact…
We all have knowledge that has allowed us to excel in different areas of our life. But as I had discussed in my Monday Morning Movie, sometimes this knowledge can be the very thing that gets in the way of our success.
But if managed properly, intelligence can be leverage to catapult some pretty astounding careers. Here are some interesting facts regarding some well-known individuals who have IQs that exceed that of genius level. According to Business Insider and Listverse:
- Microsoft co-founder, Paul Allen, allegedly obtained a perfect 1600 on the pre-1995 SAT, surpassing Bill Gates by 10 points. And he supposedly has an IQ of 160.
- Actor, James Woods, who attended MIT on a full scholarship, achieved a perfect 800 on the verbal and 779 on the math portions of the pre-1995 SAT. He opted to leave MIT early to pursue his acting career.
- Actress and model, Sharon Stone has been reported as having an IQ of 154. As an ironic side note, she described herself as “a nerdy, ugly duckling,” in her online biography at Penn State University Library.
- Asia Carrerra, who has starred in over 250 hardcore adult movies, has an IQ of 156 and played piano at Carnegy Hall at age 13.
- Director, Qunetin Tarantino has been tested as having a 160 IQ and actor Steve Martin, 142.
- Jodie Foster graduated valedictorian of her high school and Magna Cum Laude from Yale. She reportedly boasts an impressive 132 IQ.
- Lesser known, but not any less impressive, is 13 year old Jake Barnett. At age 3 he visited a planetarium with his parents and responded correctly to a question about the gravitational pull of Mars upon its moons. He has a verified IQ of 170.
- While never having obtained fame, one of the highest IQs ever recorded, was that of psychiatrist William James Sidis. He started his studies at Harvard University at the age of 11, and was fluent in more than 40 languages by the time he graduated. His IQ has been reported at the astounding level of 275.
December 11, 2012
Sacha Chua, a “sketchnote artist and experimenter-at-large” from Toronto, developed this very cool infographic of my Best Practices Are Stupid book. And she was kind enough to allow us to share it under the Creative Commons Attribution License. So spread the love, and visit Sacha’s site to show your appreciation. (click on the picture to get the full size image). Thank you Sacha!
March 4, 2012
I saw this sign while driving in Orlando. It caught my attention. As it turns out, there is very little innovation going on at Innovation Way. Maybe they need to raise the toll.