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Be The Best.

Numbers that Count.

There’s a lot of numbers out there these days.

COVID infections. COVID hospitalizations. COVID deaths.

We don’t know the future. We can minimize risk by choices we make, but still – things can just happen.

The only thing we ultimately control is our next decision. With that in mind, we can choose to make a difference each day and do something positive each day. Of course we have jobs and school and other stuff. That’s called the ‘whirlwind’. The key is to do just ONE thing beyond the whirlwind each day or week. How many days do we have? That’s interesting.

My Dad, Rev Jake, (Chris’ Grandpa) will be 90 in February 2021. He had calculated how many days he had been alive. Quick – what do you think that number is? 100,000? 50,000? 1 million? Could be.

Wait – let’s do the math – Even at 89 years young – that is only 32,485 days. A mere 4,640 weeks. And yes, you can calculate interesting numbers for yourself at this linked website. (Rev Jake says he’s good for 110 btw – so a good sign!) I’m encouraging 120. Why not? Tennis, ping pong, biking, driving, walking, reading, studying, connecting with multiple people per day – perfect.

We used to do this calculation for time management training. Take your current age. Ok, I’m 55. Calculate a comfortable end of days number. I know – a bit morose – but, let’s say 100 even. That’s 45 years. That is 16,425 days. A paltry 2,346 weeks!! Yikes. I better get moving!! Ten years is only 3,650 days. We all know a year is 365 days – but many times don’t think beyond that.

Tree Hunting in 2005 (Chris, Ingrid and Max)

Time can crawl and time can fly. It can’t come back however. Chris had 6,279 days on this earth. Not nearly enough but enough to be remembered forever and to make a massive impact on those of us around him that strive to Be The Best in his memory.

Chris’ brother Max had some sage insight on this topic. When you lose someone close, it’s never a count down – it’s a count up – until you see that person again on the other side.

I wish you all 100 years or more and trust that every day can produce a step forward towards the realization of goals, development of relationships and contribution to making this little earth we call home a better place for now and the future.

Have a good week.

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Be The Best.

Snow way

I told you I was going to throw every pun I could into the 2020 version of the blog and combine with as many Dad jokes as possible.

April 17, 2020. Yup.

Snow in April? Snow way! Yup, it’s true. For those of you on the West Coast – yah, you are laughing as you read this, physical distancing your way around Vancouver’s Seawall. I get it. I used to snicker at the weather in the east as well. I’m paying a heavy price now for all those years of jokes. đŸ˜‰

In all reality, snow is not that uncommon in April – it just doesn’t feel right. That said, it comes and goes and we know that warmer spring and summer weather will follow. In recent weeks, I’ve had a chance to reflect and discuss Jim Collin’s leadership concept of facing the brutal facts, using Winston Churchill as an epic example. If you have 3 minutes, read this excerpt. If we are overly optimistic and have our hearts set on a date or outcome we have a much higher probability of being highly disappointed or worse. From a leadership perspective this can be a bigger concern. Leadership by personality will generally not be as lasting as leadership by facing the facts with the team. If we force ourselves to face the BRUTAL FACTS, we are more likely to be able to address those issues and then find a way to win today and then again tomorrow. It is a strange combination (duality) of having a longer term positive outcome (ie, we’ll get out of COVID, we’ll be happy again after loss) with the immediacy of dealing with the facts of today, ie, my income is dropping by x and I need to do three things per day to push forward and see how I can address that…or, I will not see my son again in this lifetime – how am I going to live the rest of my life? I know that’s blunt, but that is the kind of thing we must do, in my opinion. (Remember, I ain’t a doctor and I don’t even play one on TV).

So, weather (see what I did there?) you are facing sun, cloud, rain or snow today, I trust you can face any brutal facts in your situation and then prepare an action plan for dealing with those things.

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Be The Best.

Yesterday in 20/20

You know that famous song right? Yesterday by the Beatles. Yah – those guys. Just to remind you if you aren’t humming it already, here’s the first verse.

Yesterday
All my troubles seemed so far away.
Now it looks as though they’re here to stay.
Oh I believe in yesterday.

That could be our anthem in 2020. Given COVID-19, yesterday or yesteryear is looking pretty good right now.

There’s a funny letter circulating on social media currently about 2020 being cancelled and we’d be better off with 2016 which at the time looked horrible, but now looks amazing in retrospect. 20/20 vision is always available when looking at the past. It’s a little harder when you look forward.

Yesterday can always look good and that is a classic song and totally understandable lyric especially as it relates to lost love. It’s been covered over 2,200 times and is still popular in 2020. Want to know more, check out my crack source, Wikipedia.

It’s tougher looking to the future, especially when some yesterdays are looking so good at present.

When Chris passed away I would have given anything to have him back. It’s an anguish I would never wish on my worst enemy. I still feel the same today and especially this week as March 25, 2020 marked 10 years to the day. I truly long for yesterday but strangely am more possessed than ever about the future. It’s based on one fact that regardless of religious or political views we must all believe in. It’s irrefutable. That is, we can’t go back in time as much as that is appealing to think about.

So onward we go, propelled by decisions about how we are going to shape the future, help people as we go and hopefully provide a sense of future and purpose to ourselves and those in our circles.

Me and Mrs. Friesen online w friends for virtual happy hour during COVID. After work hours of course…

Stay safe. Hug (virtually) those around you. Tip: We had so many people approach us over the years and say, ‘I wasn’t sure what to do or what to say’. Just folks saying/typing/texting/posting ‘I’m not sure what to say but thinking of you’, meant a lot. If you are thinking about calling, emailing or facetiming someone today who has suffered loss or is going through a loss of job or is socially isolated with COVID-19 – just do it. Words and deeds have never been more powerful.

We can have 20/20 vision about yesterday, but here in 2020 we’ll step forward and shape our tomorrow even though we know it’s impossible to see everything ahead.

BONUS: You remember my sister, AC (Auntie Cathy to Chris and many of you). She’s doing an online event on Sunday, March 29. It will be an amazing way to connect for many. As it starts at 10:30 PM eastern, I’ll be sleeping cause I’m old, but they are going to record the event as well. Just another way to stay connected and uplifted in strange times.