The difference between signals and noise


Day 15 of my 16 day tour through the Southeast: Roanoke is beautiful right now even if the sky is gray... So many fall colors. If I was here as a tourist they would call me a leaf peeper. It's a real thing in the tourism industry.

Last night around 11:30 the fire alarm went off in the whole hotel. It was the most intrusive alarm I have ever heard in my life. I threw some clothes on and headed down the stairs with about a hundred other guests.

No one was panicked. Most were either annoyed, alert or still dreaming. At no time did I say to myself, "This is a real fire" (until 3 fire engines and a ladder truck pulled up). 

Read more: The difference between signals and noise

Jump for the top of the box

I was a basketball coach at Umpqua Community College and on the way home from a tournament, I asked one of our players a question.

"Brian, you jump out of the gym. I mean, you're six-one and get as high or higher than me at six-five. How do you make dunking the basketball look so easy?"

After the bashful Brian Blakely resisted answering for a bit, he leaned in and nearly whispered, "Well, if you really want to know, most people jump for the rim. I don't jump for the rim. I jump for the top of the box (about a foot higher) and when you jump for the top of the box you're surprised by how easy it is to get to the rim."

Say no to the plan. Say yes to something better and enjoy making the former plan look easy.

What are you looking at?


When you start to lose traction, you will crash into what you look at.

If you're on a racetrack and slide on a turn, you get to decide if you hit the wall or steer back into the center of the track. Either look at the center of the track or the wall and you will go in that direction. Tony Robbins told this story years ago.

The problem, as he described it, is that you don't know what you will do until you're in that situation. The lesson is to get uncomfortable from time to time. Test yourself. Get on the track. Train yourself to not look at the wall. There's only one outcome if you look at the wall.

Read more: What are you looking at?