Of Cowboys and the John Maxwell Team
19 Oct 2016
Passion. It is probably one of the most overused words on the planet, because it is frequently used by people with no real understanding of what it is. What does it really mean, though? It’s an emotion that is barely controllable, it is intense.
I always thought that I understood what passion was, and I was one of those people that used it indiscriminately. Recent events, though, changed my mind entirely. Two distinct moments in time- and two that would seem like they are poles apart. A John Maxwell live training event, and a rodeo. In those moments, though, something became clear to me. Passion was a vital element to both of these institutions.
John Maxwell has built a highly successful program in leadership and management. The man himself has over 40 years of experience in the areas of leadership and personal development and has built a curriculum that has been proven successful. You walk away equipped with important tools, leadership skills, and furthermore, resources that will make you better in business, and in life.
Some of the biggest companies in the world send their people to John Maxwell’s live training programs, and now that I have experienced it for myself I understand why.
Just a week after I became certified as a John Maxwell Leadership speaker, coach and trainer, I was feeling refreshed and invigorated and most of all: passionate. That’s when I realized the parallels between this program and the rodeo.
I was in Texas, visiting my brother and on a Saturday night we visited Stockyards Championship Rodeo competition. The rodeo was located at Fort Worth’s historic Cowtown Coliseum. It was my first time at the rodeo, so I wasn’t sure what to expect.
The first bull was unleashed, rider-less, and as he kicked the dust, pawing aggressively at the dirt and driving his horns into the ground, I understood that bulls are one of the most dangerous domestic animals in the world. Nothing could have set the tone more effectively. It lowered its head, with its shoulders hunched, neck curved to the side aiming at its object of aggression.
The crowd was fired up, and everyone around me was wearing jeans (Wranglers, obviously), boots, and a lot of them even wore cowboy hats. They were immersed in the spectacle in front of them. Riders competed in bareback riding, bull riding, bronc riding, and barrel racing.
Think about it- riding in the rodeo means a lot of travel away from your family and friends, it can be lonely on the road. Not to mention the fact that every ride could be your last with injuries, and even death, a real possibility. What on earth would drive anyone to embark on a career as a rodeo rider? Passion.
Suddenly the word makes perfect sense and everything falls into place: it is vital to success. I had just been immersed in an incredible experience and inspired by John C Maxwell and here I was examining the rodeo on a different level. It isn’t a sport, it’s a lifestyle. It’s driven by determined people who are passionate about adventure. They walk away bruised, bloodied and stained with mud and they come back for more every single time.
I saw that same passion and drive in the people at the John Maxwell retreat. That’s what it’s all about, perhaps John Maxwell posited it best when he said “Champions become champions from within, not from without.”
As you read this, you may be pursuing something really important in your life and I would like to encourage you to approach it with Passion. It might mean being thrown in the mud or tossed up and down by the currents of day to day living but with Passion you will make it. Keep your head cool, if you fall down, rise up and do it again. If you have to adjust your techniques and strategies please do so but never give up. A great African icon, Nelson Mandela, once said,
“There is no passion to be found playing small – in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living”.
Settling for less is not what real achievers are made of. If you will play big, you better not settle for less.
I will leave you with the following words by Donovan Bailey who said,
“Follow your passion, be prepared to work hard and sacrifice, and, above all, don’t let anyone limit your dreams”.
Until next time..LIVE WITH PASSION
My name is Wellington and I seek to share strategies for successful living particularly strategies for mitigating the various risks that we face in life, strategies that would smoothen our journey through life and increase our chances of success. I hope you enjoy this article. Feel free to share with as many of your friends as possible.