I apologize for being late with the blog, but as I have explained in previous blogs, being a Mom and Pop business, time gets away from us. This week we have been working on a new more inclusive video for our special offer for The Doorway – To Embracing Your Inner Light. As I believe I have told you, I hate the camera. I would rather teach a class to 10,000 students than do one video where I am looking at the camera. The people give me so much energy and the camera does not. Enjoy your weekend and your family. Lady Linda and I had such a wonderful time with our kids and grandkids this week. No special event, just spending time together. The photo above is our son David with our beautiful granddaughters, Mekhalyn on the left and Jasmyn on the right and our adorable grandson Eden. David won the Choice Award (something I believe Jasmyn came up with) for Most Active.
Now for this week’s story:
I have been blessed to be asked to teach The Doorway – To Embracing Your Inner Light! to different classes. The first time Lady Linda and I were ask to teach the book we literally had nothing other than the book. We had no idea how we were going to go about Embracing Our Inner Light with only three weeks to come up with a two hour class.
We finally decided on using a time line and highlighting three questions which were asked during my life. All three of these questions are inside The Doorway. One of them was asked by a teacher when I was eleven years old in 1969. The other two were asked in 1978 when I was a senior in high school. THE DOORWAY – TO EMBRACING YOUR INNER LIGHT has many examples showing the reader how each and every one of us has a beautiful light inside. So Linda and I had to choose which examples to use for the class. We chose these three because they are stories that in one way or another I have direct knowledge of.
Early in the class I ask the three questions. I ask the students not to call out any answers. For now I just want them to think about what they think the answers may be. I tell them we will revisit the questions later in the class. One of the questions I ask in the class happened in 1978 and it goes like this.
How do you feel about a boy who shows up to the basketball courts, gets on a team, then put his hands in his pockets and walks up and down the court while everyone else plays?
When I ask the question, you can see the look of confusion on the students’ faces. Why would someone get on a team, then put their hands in their pockets and not play?
The story I tell later about this player goes like this.
Every year, all the boys in the school had to play basketball in gym class. Each class picked teams and played against each other. In order to pick these teams, we needed captains. I was chosen to be one of the captains. As captain, I had to pick the players I wanted on my team.
Each captain took turns picking players from the class one at a time until everyone was picked. One of the players I picked was a boy named Bobby. Most of the kids in our school did not like Bobby. The other kids said he was dumb. He had no athletic abilities. Everyone in gym class told me he was going to be useless as a basketball player. I told them they were wrong, and I would prove it to them. I had no idea how Bobby was going to help my team. I just had a feeling that Bobby would make a difference.
Bobby had many natural talents, but sports wasn’t one of them. It was very obvious Bobby hated sports and gym was the worst class he had to take. As we played our games, the other kids mocked Bobby. With all the mocking, Bobby wouldn’t even try. Bobby walked up and down the court with his hands in his pockets. I told Bobby not to listen to the other kids. I told him to hang in there, and he would make a difference when it really counted.
After playing a number of games, my team was the best gym team in the school and was chosen to play against an all-star team. The all-star team was filled with players from my high school senior team. Everyone told me that there was no way we could beat such a good team, even if Bobby wasn’t on our team. However, with Bobby as one of our players, we might as well not show up. I told them to watch and see.
The game was very close all the way through. Bobby just walked up and down the court the way he always did. After playing almost the entire game, the game was tied with only 26 seconds left on the clock. Guess who fouled out? That’s right, I fouled out of the game and the other team had possession of the ball. They could run the clock down to the last few seconds before they had to shoot.
I called a time-out. All my teammates huddled around me except Bobby. I called him over and told my team this was Bobby’s time. I told the other three players that I wanted them to play the best defense they had ever played. “Do not foul, and do not let them score.”
I then told Bobby I wanted him to stand under our basket at the other end of the court and act like he wasn’t part of the game. In other words, act the way he always did—standing with his hands in his pockets, showing no interest in the game.
I then told the other three players when the all-star team took their shot, I wanted all three of them to crash the boards, get the rebound, turn immediately, and throw the ball to Bobby. I told Bobby, “No one is going to be paying any attention to you. You will be wide open all by yourself. All you have to do is catch the ball and make a layup.”
Well, that’s exactly what happened: Bobby caught the ball and made a layup to win the game against the best players in the high school. As I said before, this all-star team was made up of players from my high school senior team. Just to let you know how good this all-star team was, our high school team won the league title that year and were ranked among the top teams in the state.
Bobby felt like a million dollars and the all-stars couldn’t believe that Bobby, the boy everyone said was useless, beat them.
This brings us to the next question: Who was the most valuable player on my gym team? Was it me, the best player on our team who fouled out of the game? On the other hand, was it Bobby, the player who made the winning basket with me on the bench? You also have to consider the fact that the play I set up would not have worked if Bobby was not Bobby. We would not have won the game without him.
The second lesson I learned from basketball was that you never know how valuable any one person may be. Never judge a person based on what they can’t do. Always look for what they can do. Nurture a person’s strengths, and you will be amazed at what they will contribute—not just to your life, but to other people’s lives as well.
Never underestimate anyone. Everyone is special.
Once I have finished the story, the attitude of the students in my audience has changed completely. They now understand that by lifting someone you get the very best out of them and at the same time you get the very best out of yourself. At this point they understand that all of us, including themself, has a brilliant, magnificent light inside and all we have to do is Embrace it!
I’ll tell you about the question that happened in 1969 in the next blog. This question goes like this.
How do you feel about a student that is supposed to be in 7th grade, is only in 5th grade, and is doing work like this? I then show them blow-ups of this student’s workbook, which shows they are doing 1st grade work. I then ask them again how do you feel about this student? We will talk about this question in the next blog.
The Doorway – To Embracing Your Inner Light
What am I here for? This is perhaps the most common question people have asked since the beginning of time. What most people don’t understand is that no one sees the world the way you do. This makes your vision of the world unique to you—and only you. This means that you are the only one that can bring your vision to the world by using your special gift.
However, where do you even start to look for your unique gift? And how do you bring it to the world? The answers to these questions are inside The Doorway.
Read The Doorway – To Embracing Your Inner Light and start living your purpose-filled life today! – Neal G. Brownell
Our new address, with our special offer to grab The Doorway for FREE (just pay shipping and handling) as well as a number of other VALUABLE BONUSES for FREE is http://www.thedoorwaybook.com
As always, I welcome your comments and stories. If you would like to follow my blog, please click on the plus (+) sign in the upper left-hand corner of this page. See you next week!
You’re Amazing And I’ll Prove It!
Neal G. Brownell
Guest on –
Be Awesome Podcast with Dr. Kristina Hallett (air date 3-3-20)
Heroes Like You Podcast with Joe Belliston (air date 3-5-20)
Let’s Live! with Thurman Greco – Woodstock, NY cable TV – Nov. 2019
Beyond Risk and Back with Aaron Huey (air date TBD)
Which Way? with Shari and Jann Simmons (air date Friday 1-10-20)
The Empowered Whistleblower with Dawn Westmoreland (air date 2-24-20)
The Power To Pivot with Elizabeth Miles (air date 3-16-21)