Who Are Your True Heros

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Who Are Your True Heros

Mike’s Blog 106

The People You Will Remember

This is from one of those chain emails I got back in the late 90’s that I kept in the back of my head. About the people who really matter in our lives aren’t those famous people on TV.

We always get caught up in being so famous – being so well known. Feeling that we are not important enough and have so much more to do. Yet, when we step back and look at it – do we really remember all these famous people on TV? Do they really have that big of an effect on our lives as we think?

We remember our teachers, our parents, our coaches as the ones who push us further.

For example I think of Mrs Bell – my third grade school teacher. She challenged me so much to push myself harder. I was doing so good on my grades and it was a bit boring. I could have skipped third grade but decided to stay. I didn’t want to leave my friends. I remember my parents really encouraging me to skip the grade – 2 of my friends Andy Rizzo and Nick were skipping – I should too. But I stayed. Instead I remember Mrs Bell giving me and another girl, Jasmine, extra books and assignments from the rest of the class.

One of those books was James and the Giant Peach by Rohl Dahl. I loved that book so much. I complained at first to have to read it at all and it was a thick book compared to the other books we read in class, but I’m so grateful she pushed me and didn’t let me sit back and cruise through the class.

Mrs Calhoughn was another great teacher. I remember having that 1 Macintosh computer in the back of class, but she made sure all of us had some time to play on the computer. The video game “Where in the World Is Carmen Santiago” probably sparked my early interests in international business and different cultures. We also have a “stock trading” game where we had to read the newspaper and invest fake money into stocks and track our portfolios over time. This was 5th grade I remember. I have no idea about the class itself – but I remember the weekly project we had to read the current news and report to the whole class what is happening in the world. She also talked about “saving the Earth” through recycling, drove a really old car, and got me thinking – do I need to have such expensive things.

Same with great Boy Scout leaders, coaches. Just imagine all of those small things just pushing us a bit further to get where we are today.

As a parent now, I pray my kids have these chances to have such positive encouragements in their classroom. Especially when we are young, we are so impressionable. These are our heros, not the famous basketball player or the sexy movie star. Its those people who are willing to say the hard things to you, give you strong feedback about how to improve yourself.

Not just for kids – but as adults too. I appreciate all the tough love feedback I get for the Cross Border Summit, the content I create, and everything else I am working on. And I try to also pass it forward by giving hard talks to friends about what I see in their work and life.

That is being a real hero to someone. Those difficult conversations are normally the most important.

Be someone’s hero today – forget being famous, just help one person makes a huge difference.

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