Do you have a personal board?

I’ve had one or two opportunities kinda blow up in my face over the past few weeks. No big deal, right? Crap happens, you adjust and you move on. And normally, that’s my attitude and my approach. But this time I couldn’t bring myself past it, because I screwed up. A simple action in each situation would have minimized the negative effects, almost eliminated them. And I was mad at me, because I’m well above making such stupid mistakes.

Crappy first paragraph, I know, not exactly a feel good story. I’m sharing this because I figured out something, re-learned a lesson that I know will help one or two of you. I’m lucky enough to be one of those people that friends call when they can’t figure something out; when they need relationship help, when the business model isn’t quite right, when they can’t find a job, etc. You might be that guy or gal too, so especially for you, listen up. Even if you’re usually the one others call for help and advice (especially then) you’ve got to have someone, preferably several someones, that you can call when you need help. Call them your personal board. Easy to say, but it takes some work. It means getting to know people well and letting them know you, which is an art to itself and maybe I’ll right more about that one day.

Just to be clear, I don’t necessarily mean your bff’s that you go drinking with and will commiserate with you. That’s good, but I’m talking about people you recognize as successful in the area you need help in and that are less concerned with making you feel better and more concerned with helping you learn the lesson you need to learn to get to the next level. For me these people change over time, but thank God, I’ve almost always had them. I don’t do anything formal like give them lapel pins or business cards but I do have a little mental checklist:

  • trust is the most important of all to me.
  • rapport, we may not be bestest buddies, but I need to feel an actual connection to that person.
  • success and this is one where I see the biggest mistakes, especially when people need relationship advice. For example, your single friends are not successful at marriage, why would you ask for their advice in that area?
  • balance meaning is their life in the same balance I want mine to be in. Are they 24-7 workaholics? That’s not my balance

My biggest weakness in this process is that I forget to call these people when I get in a funk, so lemme share with you my top secret weapon. The person who has a permanent place on my board is my wife. She always has my back, and has the great talent of knowing when to commiserate and when to kick my ass. I pray you have that someone, whether its a spouse, a best friend or a family member. It may not be an easy relationship to develop, but its worth the investment.

By the way, after conversations with several of those awesome folks in my life, the crappy situations of the first paragraph have revealed some exciting directions for the future. Life is awesome.

Anybody have this same idea but execute it differently? Any questions?



This is one of my first morning warm up pieces, so I’d appreciate any feedback, just be nice about it.

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