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Issue 551 - "Remembering Coach Wooden"

Woodens Wisdom
Wooden's Wisdom - Volume 11 Issue 551
Craig Impelman Speaking |  Championship Coaches |  Champion's Leadership Library Login



Coach Wooden passed away June 4, 2010. Coach Wooden’s life was a masterpiece. At Coach’s memorial service Dick Enberg, who broadcast UCLA games in the championship years, said of Coach: "His greatness was only exceeded by his goodness."
On this twelfth anniversary of his passing, I would like to share some of his lessons in a hope that you apply them to yourself and share them with others (particularly our youth). This is the list of twenty ideas we taught at our summer basketball camps which Coach Wooden taught at for thirty-five years. His last appearance was when he was 98 years young.
"The most important word in the dictionary is LOVE."
"There is nothing more powerful than gentleness."
"A person can make mistakes, but they are not a failure until they blame others."
"Don’t try to be better than someone else – be the best you can be."
"Don’t worry about things over which you have no control."
"Don’t Whine, Don’t Complain, Don’t Make Excuses"
"Discipline yourself and others won’t need to."
"Give so much time to the improvement of yourself that you don’t have time to criticize others."
"Be more concerned with character than reputation, because your character is what you really are while your reputation is what others think you are."
"People are usually about as happy as they make up their mind to be."
"Make each day your masterpiece."
"Don’t let yesterday take up too much of today."
"Things usually turn out the best for people who make the best out of the way things turn out."
"It’s amazing how much can be accomplished if no one is concerned with who gets the credit."
"Be as enthusiastic about the success of others as you are about your own."
"Happiness begins where selfishness ends."
"Failing to prepare is preparing to fail."
"Don’t mistake activity for achievement."
"If you don’t have time to do it right, when will you find time to do it over?"
"The purpose of discipline is to teach."
The challenge is not to like the quotes or memorize them. The challenge is to have your everyday behaviors, and those of others, reflect these ideas. We must close the gap between knowing and doing. These ideas don’t just reflect the way John Wooden wrote. They reflect the way he lived. The example he set is why: "His greatness was only exceeded by his goodness."
What example are you setting?

Yours in Coaching,
Craig Impelman




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Application Exercise



When Mother Cooked With Wood

I do not quarrel with the gas,
Our modern range is fine,
The ancient stove was doomed to pass
From Time's grim firing line,
Yet now and then there comes to me
The thought of dinners good
And pies and cake that used to be
When mother cooked with wood.
The axe has vanished from the yard,
The chopping block is gone,
There is no pile of corkwood hard
For boys to work upon;
There is no box that must be filled
Each morning to the hood;
Time in its ruthlessness has willed
The passing of the wood.
And yet those days were fragrant days
And spicy days and rare;
The kitchen knew a cheerful blaze
And friendliness was there.
And every appetite was keen
For breakfasts that were good
When I had scarcely turned thirteen
And mother cooked with wood.
I used to dread my daily chore,
I used to think it tough
When mother at the kitchen door
Said I'd not chopped enough.
And on her baking days, I know,
I shirked whene'er I could
In that now happy long ago
When mother cooked with wood.
I never thought I'd wish to see
That pile of wood again;
Back then it only seemed to me
A source of care and pain.
But now I'd gladly give my all
To stand where once I stood,
If those rare days I could recall
When mother cooked with wood.

Edgar Albert Guest (1881-1959)






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