Quotes from Michael Jordan, Vince Lombardi, and Coach Wooden

Michael Jordan: "Take small steps. Don't let anything trip you up. All those steps are like pieces of a puzzle. They come together to form a picture. When it's complete, you've reached your ultimate goal, step by step. I can't see any other way of accomplishing anything."

Vince Lombardi: "Once you learn to quit it becomes a habit."

John Wooden: "If you get yourself too engrossed in things over which you have no control, it will adversely affect the things over which you do have control."


Louis Eytinge serving a life sentence

Napoleon Hill writes in the book “Napoleon Hill's A Year Of Growing Rich”:

“Louis Victor Eytinge was service a life sentence in an Arizona State Prison. He had no friends, no lawyer and no money. But he did have enthusiasm which he used so effectively that it bought him his freedom.

Eytinge wrote to the Remington Typewriter Company (before the days of the personal computers) relating his plight and asking the company to sell him a typewriter on credit. The company did better than that. It gave him a typewriter.

He began writing business firms asking for their sales literature – which he rewrote and returned to them. His copywriting was so effective that he soon had enough money, from voluntary donations, to hire a lawyer. His work was so good, in fact, that it caught the attention of a big New York advertising agency which, with the help of his lawyer, got him pardoned. As he walked out of prison, he was met by the agency head who greeted him with these words: “Well, Eytinge, your enthusiasm has proved more powerful than the iron bars of this prison.”

The agency had a job waiting for him.”


Tom Cruise Overcoming Dyslexic

Meg Grant writes in the June 2005 edition of Readers Digest in an interview between Readers Digest and Tom Cruise:

"RD: Growing up, you must have wished for some help yourself. Your parents divorced, your mother juggled jobs, and your family didn't have much money.

Cruise: We helped each other. Either you can look at something in a negative way or you can look in a positive way, and then reach to improve. I always thought, How am I going to make this better?

RD: You were diagnosed dyslexic as a child, right?

Cruise: Yes, but I didn't buy it. [When I got older] I tried speed-reading. I hired tutors. And I was just hitting a wall. It never made sense to me. I was very, very frustrated. I had a reading problem, no question. I was, from their definition, dyslexic, and in their definition, I probably had ADD. I would ask, "Why am I having this problem? How do I resolve this?" They can't tell you why. There's no resolution.

RD: When did things begin to change?

Cruise: In my 20s, I went through the basic Scientology tools and realized instantly that I'd found the answer. I was able to read.

RD: That was an important lesson for you. What do you most want your children to learn about life?

Cruise: I've told them anything is possible. But unless they know it for themselves and you give them the tools, it doesn't mean anything."


Marshal Field

Napoleon Writes in one of his books:

"Marshal Field lost his retail store in the great Chicago fire, and with it almost all his money. Pointing to the smoldering ashes, he said, “On this very spot, I will build the greatest retail store in the world.” The great Marshal Field and Company, which now stands at State and Randolph streets in Chicago, testifies that there is the seed of an equivalent benefit in every adversity."

Space Tourist Greg Olsen

From http://msnbc.msn.com/id/9742587/site/newsweek/ :

"On Oct. 1, after eight months and 900 hours of training in Russia, Olsen, 60, blasted into space in a bell-shaped Soyuz capsule destined for the International Space Station. During his 10-day adventure, Olsen logged three million miles, orbiting the Earth 100 times, 250 miles above the ground.

How do you beat this experience?
You don't. You just continue living your life. That's a lesson in life. 2004 started out gloriously for me, with all the hoopla. Then it took that nosedive when I got the medical disqualification from Russia [for an undisclosed medical condition—which later went away]. The last half of last year was pretty bleak for me. But I toughed it out."

Persistence Quotes, Mostly.


Robert Kraft: “Perseverance is how most things get done and deals get made, because eventually, most of the world will just give up.”

Arnold Palmer: “A man might be walking around lucky, and not know it unless he tries.”

Michael Jordan: “Success isn't something you chase. It is something you have to put forth the effort for constantly; then maybe it'll come when you least expect it. Most people don't understand that.”

Calvin Coolidge: “Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent.”

James J. Corbett, Heavyweight Boxer: “Fight on more round. When your feet are so tired that you have to shuffle back to the center of the ring, fight on more round. When your arms are so tired that you can hardly lift your hands to come on guard, fight on more round. When your nose is bleeding and your eyes are black and you are so tired that you wish your opponent would crack you one on the jaw and put you to sleep, fight on more round – remember that the man who always fight on more round is never whipped.”

Junko Tabei, first female to climb Mount Everest in 1975: “Technique and ability alone do not get you to the top; it is willpower that is the most important – it rises in your heart.”

And a different type of quote:

Mark Twain: “Do something every day that you don't want to do. This is the golden rule for acquiring the habit of doing your duty without pain.”


Vince and Table Topics in Toastmasters

Sometimes, just showing up is half the battle. We may make ourselves think we have no chance of winning, but when we do show up, we actually win because we are the better one at that particular time, despite our thinking. That is what happened to a member of my Toastmasters club. For those who don't know, Toastmasters is a public speaking club, and Table Topic is the portion of the meetings where we pratice impromptu speaking.

We held a club level competition to select the winner of the Table Topic Competition. Out of four competitors, Vince didn't place first or second place. However, the first and second place winner could not go to the next level of competition (the Area Table Topic Contest) due to both of them being out of town during that time.

So when asked for volunteers, Vince agreed to represent us in the Area Level Contest. One would think that since he didn't win first or second place in our club, he wouldn't have a chance against the winners of other clubs. I admit to thinking along those lines - I sure know I'd have been intimated if I hadn't won first place and had been sent to the Area Contest.

However, to his credit, Vince didn't let that keep him from giving his best at the Area Contest. He competed against 3 other competitors. He was even giving a subject matter (subject matter are given to the contestant right before they are to speak for 2 minutes on the subject matter - so they have absolutely no preparation time)that he knew absolutely nothing about - video games. Yet he managed to weave a speech about that topic. When he sat down, he had the look of someone who seemed defeated. Yet, when it came time to judge, the judge selected him as the winner of the Area Table Topic Contest! He defeated all of the other first place club contest winners.

So, sometimes, we must just show up - we never know what might have happened. I've heard it said that showing up is half the battle, and it sure proved right.

The story doesn't end there, Vince went to the next level of competition - the Division Level to compete against several other Area Contest winners. He also won that contest. He is now waiting for the next level of competition at the District Level. Whether he wins that or not doesn't matter in regards to this story - he's already shown that we must not limit ourselves and just go for it without imposing mental limits on our minds.

October 22 update: Vince went to the District Contest. The other two contestant did not show up, with one of them breaking her leg the night before. Since Vince was the only contestant, he automatically won the District Contest...!


Stuart Austin - from journalist to patent attorney

Napoleon Hill writes in "Napoleon Hill's A Year of Growing Rich":

"Years ago, I worked with a fellow named Stuart Austin Wier of Dallas. He was a contributor to a magazine I edited and was just getting by financially. He would probably have remained a starving writer if a story he was writing about an inventor hadn't suddenly inspired him to change his life.

Much to the surprise of those who knew him, he announced he was giving up journalism and going back to school to become a patent attorney. He wasn't going to be just any patent attorney, he was going to become "the top patent attorney in the United States." He put his plan into action with such fervor that he completed law school in record time.

When he began his practice, he deliberately sought out the toughest cases. Soon his reputation spread throughout the country and his services were in such high demand that even though his fees reached astronomical levels, he was turning away more clients than he accepted."