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Issue 642 - "The worst thing you can do when action is needed is to take no action at all." (Jia Jiang and John Wooden)

Woodens Wisdom
Wooden's Wisdom - Volume 13 Issue 642
Craig Impelman Speaking |  Championship Coaches |  Champion's Leadership Library Login


In 30 years of working in my basketball camps, the most proactive request that I received from parents was: "Please help my child to stop being afraid of making a mistake." I loved hearing that because it meant that the parents recognized the profound importance of teaching initiative from an early age.
The two Wooden fundamentals that Coach stressed to eliminate this fear of failure are:
  1. "The people that don't make mistakes are the people that don't do anything."
  2. "The worst thing you can do when action is needed is to take no action at all."
In his book, "Rejection Proof", ( ), Jia Jung talks about not allowing the fear of rejection to stop us from making requests.
"When we don’t even ask for things, we are rejecting ourselves by default—and probably missing out on opportunity as a result. A study by the consulting firm Accenture found that less than half of working Americans have ever asked for a raise. Yet statistically, 85 percent of those who ask for a raise get something.
Sometimes we stop making requests to the detriment of our dreams, aspirations, and relationships. We start to get overly timid and careful, and we start to tell ourselves stories about how we shouldn’t bother people, how we would get rejected anyway, and how we will someday ask "when the timing is right," even though the "right timing" never comes. If we feel we can ask for anything we want or need and not be afraid of rejection, judgment, and disapproval, amazing things can happen."
Is there a request you should make?

Yours in Coaching,
Craig Impelman




Watch Video

Application Exercise



Warning The Carpenter

Say, Mister Carpenter, you know, you got me spanked last night,
I guess your Pa and Ma forgot to teach you what was right;
An' I can't come here anymore to watch you build that fence,
Coz my Pa says a man like you ain't got a bit of sense.
You 'member yesterday, when you was nailing up a board
An' hit your thumb an awful whack the drefful things you swored,
Well, I felt sorry for you then, coz I am only three,
An' I supposed 'at what you said would be all right for me.

Las' night I was a-playin' wif my hammer an' a box
An' hit my thumb jus' like you did two terrible hard knocks;
My Ma an' Pa were standing near, an' bofe of 'em turned red
When I let loose an' said out loud the drefful things you said.
You never told me it was wrong; it seemed to comfort you,
An' when I hit my thumb I s'posed it was all right to do.
But you will never get to be an angel when you die
Becoz you used such wicked words an' let your temper fly.

My Pa, he took me on his knee an' spanked me for it, too,
An' Ma, she jus' sat down an' cried the whole long evenin' through;
She says there ought to be a law to keep bad men away
From decent neighborhoods like ours where little children play.
You let me get a wallopin'. An' I don't think it fair,
Say! Ain't you got no Pa an' Ma to teach you not to swear?

It's all your fault that I got licked, an' Ma says when you die
There ain't a-goin' to be no place for you up in the sky;
An' Pa says 'at you ought to know 'at little fellow's ears
Pick up the things that bad men say. An' if he ever hears
That I've been hangin' round this place he don't know what he'll do;
I guess he'll tell your Pa an' Ma, an' you'll get walloped, too.

Edgar Albert Guest (1881-1959)






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