Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Mad a Few Mistakes Lately?

“Everything we enjoy in society is a direct result of the accumulated learning derived from millions of mistakes. No mistakes, no progress. Yet we still look at making a mistake as embarrassing, wrong, an act bordering on sin. If you’re making mistakes, it means you’re doing new things, taking risks, stretching yourself. You’re growing, learning. And isn't the journey, the experience, not the destination, what life is all about?”

from “Living an Extraordinary Life”
by Robert White

My practice is to refrain from commenting on quotes from my book! Of course, you can comment below.

Signed and inscribed copies of the book for yourself or as a welcomed gift are available at

And, the Kindle edition is available from Amazon at

With love and respect,


Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Can You Be Mad, Sad, Glad or Afraid?

“One loses the capacity to grieve as a child grieves, or to rage as a child rages: hotly, despairingly, with tears of passion. One grows up, one becomes civilized, on learns one’s manners, and consequently can no longer manage these two functions—sorrow and anger—adequately.”

Anita Brookner

The old saying “we teach what we most need to learn” is often cited in training and executive coaching circles. It’s certainly true for me in this subject I keep coming back to in these weekly offerings: learning to recapture and expand as a responsible adult my ability to express what I really feel.

I usually reference my mentor Bob Wright of the Wright Institute in Chicago when exploring the value of becoming more literate in the language of feelings. This week I’ll reference my children, Emily and Levi. Recently we’ve been in conversation about their desire to contact their birth mother for the first time—and it may happen this summer.

A useful question when exploring feelings is “are you mad, sad, glad or afraid?” When I apply it to myself around these recent conversations I notice that what surfaces is my old anger about their birth mom’s behavior; my sadness at some of the pain they’ve endured; my joy erupting as I notice how they are maturing and growing as young adults; and my fear that the possible encounter will not go well for them.

The learning point for me—and I offer it to you for consideration—is that when we heighten our awareness about what we are feeling, when we ask that question about being mad, sad, glad or afraid, the answers are often complex and immensely valuable in our journey toward living an extraordinary life. Comments please.

With love and respect,


P. S. My “seminar in a box,” an 8 CD plus Owner’s Manual program about building a life of meaning and abundance is available at

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

The Battle Between Good and Evil

“The whole course of human history may depend on a change of heart in one solitary and even humble individual – for it is in the solitary mind and soul of the individual that the battle between good and evil is waged and ultimately won or lost.”

M. Scott Peck

In a recent conversation with dear friend Kathy we wandered into the tempting and ultimately self-indulgent and intellectually questionable territory of “when we were young things were better.”

Oh! And when I was five years old I walked seven miles in the snow to get to my one-room schoolhouse with a single pot bellied stove. NOT!

After some reflection, my current conclusion is that there was some truth in that conversation with Kathy and it dealt with what we perceived as an erosion of some positive, life-affirming values. One of those values that needs reaffirmation and expansion is personal responsibility—owning the reality we create instead of blaming or crediting a group or an all-knowing, all-powerful leader or the moon and the stars.

It is, as author Scott Peck says, ultimately our “solitary mind and soul” that chooses good or evil in every moment. As always, let us know what you’re reflecting on by commenting below.

With love and respect,


P. S. You can follow me on Twitter @xtraordnryrob A recent video offering was great fun with deeper meaning. Go to

P.P.S. My friends at Give Kids the World serve 7,000 families with a seriously ill child each year. They’re in the running to qualify for a $250,000 grant to refresh their original buildings in Florida. You can help with your vote daily at #pepsirefresh Please join me in supporting this worthwhile effort.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Are You a Sheep or a Lion?

“I am more afraid of an army of one hundred sheep led by a lion than of an army of one hundred lions led by a sheep.”

Charles Maurice deTalleyrand-Perigord

Do you feel the challenge inherent in these stirring words? I do!

My 90 minute, half and full day programs on leadership include the assertion that broadly based leadership is more needed today than ever before.

Waiting for someone else to lead – in your personal life, your family, your work or your community – is no longer an adequate response to the challenges and opportunities before us.

If you’d like to learn more about my work with individuals and organizations in developing current and future leaders, just e mail me at or call me directly at (303) 993-4640 or reach me on Skype at Robert.White65.

Dialogue, as always, is welcome by commenting below.

With love and respect,


Wednesday, June 2, 2010

What Makes You Come Alive?

"Don't ask yourself what the world needs; ask yourself what makes you come alive. And then go and do that. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive."

Howard Thurman

I love this quote! Share your thoughts about it or a quote you love by commenting below.

With love and respect,