If cancer doesn't get you, treatment side effects might!

About Side Effects

Today I completed my fourth week of recovery since undergoing prostate cancer surgery. The healing process has gone quite well. The only noticeable condition that I'm experiencing is that of periodic daily fatigue and tiredness. My doctors assure me that that's an expected outcome of the effort my body is expending to heal itself. The good news is that I've been told that I might be a little ahead of schedule.

The tough news is that when I'm more fully healed additional treatments will be required to battle the remaining cancer. 

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An open letter for family and friends

Dear God. Re Grinch
Just a few days ago I wrote the following letter to my children and family. I like to keep them informed about how I'm doing, just as I like to know when there is something in one of their lives that may be of some concern. There's a lot of us and we live in several states and countries. It's not easy to connect with everyone at the same time so I write and follow-up with a call. 

I've learned that I have been blessed with many friends who are also spread by distance. I decided to share this letter publicly because so many of you have offered prayers, support, and expressed interest in knowing how things progress. I appreciate you all. But I won't be following up with a call.

Dear family,
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Recovery - Five Days After Surgery

At home recoveryIt's been five days since I was wheeled into surgery to have prostate cancer removed from my body. The SCCA medical team - working at the University of Washington Medical Center - did an excellent job while being compassionate and aware of my feelings. When it was over Dr. Ellis came to visit Cindy and me and said that the five hour surgery went well and that he's hopeful that he was able to "get it all." Of course, when cancer cells are microscopic, we won't know that until the pathology report comes back next later this week.
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But the greatest of these is LOVE

Faith Hope loveIn just twenty minutes Cindy and I will leave home and head for the UW Medical Center. We are scheduled to check in at 10:00 with a prostectomy beginning at 11:30. I'm all set and decided to take these last few minutes to reflect on what has shown up all around me. Time is short, so this will just be free form - quick and easy.

There have been so many people extending their prayers, well-wishes, and encouragement to me. I feel blessed to have so many people who care in my life.

The power of prayer is evident and real. I know I wouldn't feel this confident and unafraid without it.

Love is such a special emotion in our lives. It can be felt from hundreds and thousands of miles away. I'm feeling it big time.

Family is the greatest source of energy and love that a man can have. At the end of the day family is what we came into the world with and what we will leave behind.

Faith is a requirement that is sometimes taken for granted. Not just our faith in God, but a more earthly faith in the surgeon, anethesiologist, and all the hands that will get a patient through their day of surgery. I sure hope my medical team is having a very good day!

"And now these three remain: Faith, Hope, Love. But the greatest of these is LOVE" - 1 Corinthians 13:13

Forget Cancer

Christmas 15There are times when a person forgets that he has prostate cancer. It happens when he's out shopping for his wife's Christmas present; when he's picking his son and granddaughter up at the airport; when he's trimming a fresh tree with family ornaments; when he's cheering on a Seahawk win; and when the house is filled with laughter while gathering for dinners of pizza or Chinese food.
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Movember Monday - Talking Radiation

Mo Mo
When Movember officially ends (Monday, Movember 30th) my search for the most appropriate treatment for prostate cancer really ramps up. I'll be meeting with five specialists during the coming week and plan to make a treatment decision shortly thereafter.

Monday is all about radiation therapy. 
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Movember Apple Cup Challenge

Apple Cup Movember
Happy Thanksgiving Coug and Dawg Fans. I'm thankful for all of you (even the ones that wear purple and gold). I have a few days left in Movember and I'm less than $400 away from the $5000 fundraising goal I set. So let's have a little friendly competition.

For every dollar donated to my Movember campaign between now and tomorrow a point will be generated. The donor simply indicates which team to credit their points to by putting "Go Cougs" or "Go Dawgs" into their comment line. Double points will be awarded on gifts of $50 or more.

I'll even wear the school colors of the winning team to work for a day next week. How's that for incentive Husky fans? (I'm not worried. Cougs are a lot more generous!)

So let's get the Movember Apple Cup started right away. Click here to contribute and score some Movember Apple Cup points! 

So Many Choices - Prostate Cancer

Book ProstateI'm finding that there are a lot of opinions and a lot of treatment options when it comes to prostate cancer. Talk to the men who have been through it and you frequently hear the enthusiasm that each of them has for the doctor they used and the procedure that they chose. Talk to the specialists and you'll hear about the course of care that they are focused on and the challenges that alternatives provide. The choices all come with serious side effects and a level of uncertainty. There's not an absolute direction that the medical profession has settled
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The First 10 Days

Awareness ProstateIt's been ten days since my new urologist, Dr. Marquez, confirmed what we both suspected. That was the day he told Cindy and I that the biopsy he'd performed confirmed that I have prostate cancer. It was the day that I found myself in a place that was both familiar and unknown. While the setting and doctor were different, the conversation was eerily similar to the one I'd listened intently to when we were told about Cindy's breast cancer and later about her lymphoma. Unknown, because this time the words were about my body and the cancer that was attacking it. This time I would be the fighter and, just a few days after learning that her cancer was finally in remission, Cindy would be in my corner. Our roles were now reversed.

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A Movember To Remember


The mustache growing month for raising awareness and money to "change the face of men's health" is underway and the hard to see fuzz growing on my upper lip is gaining length. This year - while unplanned and unexpected - is going to be different from the others. Nine days into the month, I found out that I have prostate cancer.

This is my story.

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Experiencing a transformtaion.

It was about this time last year that I recommitted to what would become the third year of a journey toward a healthier life. For the majority of that time I was focused on moving more and eating less... or at least eating better. I developed better habits including daily walks and frequent lunches at the salad bar instead of the grill. Through it all, I was encouraged by a community of friends and family that applauded my successes and empathized with my setbacks. My blog pretty much documents it all. 

Then, shortly after Labor Day in 2014, my wife and I committed to trying a nutrition system created world class formulator, John Anderson. His lineup of products was recommended by a friend with a promise of weight loss, stress reduction, renewed energy, and the prospect of feeling ten to twenty years younger. 

Left: I wasn't feeling happy with myself at 325 pounds in September, 2011.

Right: In Decenber of 2014 I was down to 239 pounds and feeling re-energized and younger.

To good to be true? We thought so! So we did our research seeking answers about ingredients, outcomes, and potential unintended consequences. Everything we found checked out to our satisfaction. All we needed to do next was enroll as associates within the company, order the products, and put the new source of nourishment into our bodies. In just five days we knew our decision was a great one. Our only regret was that we hadn't started sooner. 

Now we're sharing our story and encouraging friends and family to give it a try. All of the promises are coming true for us. We're feeling the best that we have in years and we'd like the same for you in the coming year.

If you're making a resolution to lose weight, build strength, or improve your financial freedom in 2015, get in touch with me. It's very possible that I've got the answer to all three.

For more about my year in review click here or browse the entries in the Healthy Edge section of my blog. I hope to hear from you.

Diet starts with D-I-E. Not a good way to live!

Any Man...There are times in life when who you're with and where you are are far more important than what you are doing. Those can be the times of special memories. Those are the days and the moments that we'll carry with us for years to come. And those are the days that I wouldn't allow what I'm eating to get in the way of making those special memories. Dad's Weekend at WSU is definitely one of those times. A time to enjoy the ones your with. 

That's why I'm so happy that my nutritional routine fits into my life. I've seen and experienced so many systems that require my life to fit into their program. And it just doesn't work. They're not fun. They're not enjoyable. As a result they aren't sustainable. I'm not on a diet, I'm on a live it. And boy did we live during Dad's Weekend!

Did you ever notice that the first three letters of the word diet are D-I-E? Think about it!

To read about one such special weekend and an alternative approach, please click here on my Healthy Edge. Thanks!

Why wait? Yesterday you said tomorrow!

YesterdayThree months have passed since Cindy and I started our Isagenix journey. I remember considering the invitation that Brenda had extended to us for several months before we finally said "YES!" The truth is, when we were ready we decided to wait until Labor Day was behind us and summer was over before getting started. We didn't want to detract from our last month of fun in the sun. Now we wish we had started months, or even years, sooner. 
Together we have released a combined total of more than 75 unwanted pounds. There's a new feeling of energy that has come into our bodies, and we're able to do things together - like walking, hiking, and biking - that only months ago were simply not possible. Those chronic aches and pains, as well as the tension that comes from stress, are gone. Really gone!

Sound too good to be true? That's what I thought too. But it's very real. Read this week's entry in @Healthy Edge for details.

Realizations and understandings

DaisiesWhen I finished my first month of using a newly discovered nutrition program, I realized how much better I was feeling. Not just the weight loss, but the energy and absence of those stubborn aches and pains. Looking back, I now wish I'd started much sooner and began sharing with others much more quickly. 

Here's a few of my journal entries from that time period. 

Thanksgiving Reflections

Thanksgiving eve thoughts and reflections. I've got so much to be grateful for!

A friend who, after 40 years, had the courage to call me.
A family that unconditionally loves and forgives me.
A home that is more than a shelter for me.
A career that has challenged and rewarded me.
A colleague that inspires and supports me.
A memory of parents who encouraged me.
A mentor who respected and inspired me.
A community that enabled and recognized me.
A teacher that pushed and motivated me.
A wife that accepts, loves, and completes me. 
A Heavenly Father who does it all... for me.

Hoping each of you will take a moment to consider what you have to be grateful for too.
Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!

Courage and Confidence Emerges

As I moved into week three of my new nutrition program I was feeling more and more confident with the routine and had less of a need to check the recommended schedule to remember what to use at specific times of the day. I was feeling more and more energized and was developing a real belief that the products were doing exactly what Brenda - my sponsor - suggested they would. I'll pick up the story with excerpts from my journal, beginning on day sixteen after returning from "Dad's Weekend" at WSU.

Continue by clicking here.

Own Your Own Life


For nearly twenty-five years – the majority of my career - I envisioned myself in a role atop a growing and successful company. I knew what to do and how to do it, but the pace and momentum of my career along with the responsibilities of a growing family kept me in corporate leadership roles that were a step away from the top. Despite that success, the itch to build a successful business of my own still needed to be scratched. Yet it never seemed to be the right time.

Then two things happened that added new dimension to my perspective. My wife was diagnosed with cancer and I turned sixty.

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New Beginning with Healthy Edge

The beginningDear friends, family, and readers of my blog who occasionally stop by to see how my journey to a healthier life has progressed,

You may remember how the journey began a little more than three years ago.

It's been quite some time since I've shared with you here. Not because I've given up or quit and not because I haven't had anything to say. Instead, I've been quiet because I wanted to be sure of what I've been experiencing before sharing an exciting new element of my story. I think I've found it... "the healthy edge."

For the details please click here...

It's Not About The Popcorn


Some memories are just tiny pieces of inconsequential experiences. One that comes to mind for me is about my dad and popcorn nights. No kidding!

When I was a kid popcorn didn't come out of a bag, there were no air-poppers, and Jiffy Pop was a luxury invented in 1959 that wouldn't be affordable at our house for at least 5-10 more years. No, popcorn at the Brooks house was made on the stovetop in one of the pots that mom kept for daily use in her kitchen cupboards. Into the pot went some Crisco, a cup of popcorn, and we waited. When the kernels were heard beginning to pop on the inside, the maker began to aggressively shake the pot while it rested on the red hot burner. The anticipation grew. The routine was the same, each and every time.

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Aprons, flowers and pearls. A story for another day.

Mom with ThreeHe looked me in the eyes with a disappointment that I hadn’t seen before and said, “You’re breaking your mother’s heart.” 

There was strength in his voice and a glistening dampness in his eyes when he spoke. He didn’t need to say more. Those five words, spoken by my dad in the living room of the home where I was raised, landed on my ears with a force that he couldn’t have imagined. A message that took only seconds deliver has stuck with me, unforgotten, for nearly forty years. His message was clear. He was reminding me that my mom – the love of his life – was the person on this earth that he cherished the most. The woman he had spent a lifetime with. The person that he protected from all forms of pain… even if it required the toughest of conversations with his only son. And he was right. My mom was an angel. His angel.

I was 25 and after three years of marriage had just celebrated becoming a father for the first time. I was so proud. I’d watched my parents raise their five children (especially my little sisters) and love their grandchildren for years. My mom’s home was always open and the love for her family was genuine and immense. There was never a hesitation about being involved and helping as each grandchild was welcomed into the growing family. It was the way it had always been. Until then.

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Dear Abby - From A Proud Dad

Beware friends and family...  If you think you are going to blush or be shocked, just don't read any farther.

abby & me

You can't hide pride forever!

It’s been too long. It’s time to let you in on a family secret.

When a man has seven children (four by conception and three by selection) there will be a large variety of reasons to be proud. It could be excellence in sports or academics; it could be generosity or patriotism. A dad with seven children doesn’t have to look very hard to experience opportunities to be proud. Sometimes proud moments appear in places and for reasons that I didn’t see coming. Maybe even a little embarassing. That’s one way a family secret can get started. 

I want to share one of those moments with you tonight.

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The Power of Love

P o L TitleFor some, it takes every day that we have together to create that special indefinable bond. Some unfortunately live a lifetime without making the connection that creates it. Songs, poems, stories, and plays have been written about it. Artists have tried to paint it and photographers have tried to capture it in images. The power of love has been at the core of our healing and sense of peace for centuries. A search for the phrase on the Internet returned more than 3.5 million responses. Clearly, it’s something that matters to many of us.

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The Kindness Boomerang Returns

Kindness Boomerang

There are times when special things happen in our lives without expectation or prior consideration. They aren't tied to our calendar and they aren't part of a prior arrangement. They are special surprises in our lives. Occasions that give me cause to pause and to really consider why they happened. Could they simply be just chance happenings? Some might refer to them as the result of "good karma." I prefer to think of them as the result  of life's kindness boomerang. How and what we put out there determines what and how things come back to us.

When I was a boy, I had my first boomerang experience. Its round-trip flight looked so simple but was incredibly hard to make happen on my own. That slimly cut elbow-shaped piece of wood, with its smooth sides and perfectly rounded edges, seemed to have a mind of its own. Each time I threw it out I would have to run across our expansive front yard to retrieve it. The more I expected it to come back to me and the harder I tried to make it happen, the farther I would have to run. It was only when I wasn't trying so hard to make the boomerang circle back to me that I started to get a feel for the right motion and rhythm. There was a correct speed, a correct angle, and a correct height of release. The more I tossed the boomerang out there, the closer it came to returning to me. Until, on that special but unexpected occasion, it started coming back to me in a way that I could catch it. I don't think I'll ever forget how wonderful that felt.

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Pink Laces

Easton's LacesEvery piece of a football players uniform and equipment has a job to do. For the most part - from mouth guards and face masks to helmets and shoulder pads - the job is one of protection. The uniform is also designed to communicate. For instance, a player's number not only helps identify who he is, but also signifies the position that he plays.

Last week, when Cindy began her latest battle with cancer, a football players uniform took on added importance for us. Mixed in with the many prayers and well wishes received from friends and family, was a simple heartfelt photograph sent by a very special first-time player. Our oldest grandson Easton (almost ten) laced up his new cleats for the very first time. No big deal, you might think. Except the laces he chose were brilliant pink! He'd seen the pros do it and he knew it was how he wanted to dress for tryouts. His uniform, that day, was designed to communicate a special love between him and his Grandma Cindy and to protect her from the cancer that would be her opponent.

We love you Easton. Thanks for saying so much without saying or writing a single word.

Thank You All

Cindy preop

Last year we found out that my wife Cindy had breast cancer. She faced it head on and made the decision to have the extreme surgery. You were there for us. You prayed for us. The surgery was successful and we began the process of moving on.  Almost...

During the surgery, Cindy's lymph nodes were examined and were found to contain cancerous tumors in the form of non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL). We were told that she was fortunate to have caught it early and that it was not in any of her organs or bone - just stage three. No treatment was necessary. Cindy would just have more frequent exams during a period of waiting and watching the (hopefully) slow development and growth of the tumors. Again, you were there for us. You prayed for us. And a year went by without too much concern. Until...

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Cougar Sunsets

There are days when I least expect it that I am blessed by the well-chosen words of a text message from someone special. Yesterday was one of those days. Thanks Abby!

Coug Sunset B
"I'm looking up at a pink and blue sunset after a workout on Mooberry track and I realize that you and I share this sunset. I realize that you've looked up at the very same one along with all other Cougs. Its the sunset that cuts through our campus and sits on rolling wheat fields. It tells you that you can rest because the day is over." - Abby Student

The Price of Power - A False Edge

An Opinion

Some of you are aware that I write a bimonthly column for MARKETING - the Northwest publication for marketing and communication professionals. My most recent submission takes a look at the practice that a handful of powerful brands have adopted - leaning on their marketing partners for extended payment terms to gain a competitive edge and increase corporate profits. 

Now that I think about it again, I'll add that the practice being discussed is actually a false edge. The short term advantages it creates comes at an extreme price. These brands, regardless of their size and stature, appear to be blind to the cost of their powerful demands. Instead of gaining a sustainable advantage, overbearing brands often lose the trust and respect of their partners and, most importantly, their customers.

I'd like to invite you to read two perspectives on this behavior - mine, and my partner's in the publication - Digital Kitchen CEO, Bill Fritsch. Please click here to be taken to the full story.

As always, I welcome your insights and feedback very much

Cap Gun Memories

cap gunChildhood Fourth of July's We're Some Of The Best!

Memories come from unexpected places. Something causes us to reflect on times of our past. Something that we experience feels similar to times gone by. This picture, and the memories triggered by the items that are in it, transported me back to my youth like a shot through a time capsule. This grouping of memorabilia was in a display case at Blueberry Hill's Farm and Restaurant in Manson, Washington. I spotted it for the first time when my family and I visited there last year. It was one of many such visits that we make several times each summer for their world-class breakfast. Why I hadn't noticed it previously I don't know, but I recorded it in a picture and saved it for nearly a year. Today is the right time to share the picture and the memories it triggered.

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Kindness via Mill Bay #5


Our Old Fart Boat Ride

When Cindy and I backed off the boat lift early this morning, we were on our way to enjoy what we jokingly call our "old fart boat ride." A ride like this barely creates a wake behind the boat as we glide across a flat and peaceful Lake Chelan, sipping our morning coffee and soaking in the sun's rays and lake shore views.

In those ways, this morning was everything we expected. The difference was that we happened to come across a small kayak that was floating aimlessly down-lake without a passenger in sight. Clearly, the yellow kayak had come loose from it's buoy or dock - perhaps during yesterday's wind and rain storms.

As we pulled alongside the kayak, we could see markings on it's stern. They read "Mill Bay #5." I'm familiar with Mill Bay as the place where my boat gets launched each summer; a location where friends park their mobile home for summer vacations; and as the name of the local casino where the Deepwater Amphitheater's summer concert series kicks off with a performance by Huey Lewis and the News on July 5th.

With no one else in sight, Cindy and I instinctively knew that the right thing to do was to change our course and tie the wayward kayak onto the back of our boat. We would continue our quiet boat ride and at the same time look for the family or rental company where the kayak belonged. We turned our boat around and headed for Mill Bay.
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The Proudest Moment

BP Easton

Late last winter, while visiting with my son Ryan, I learned that my grandson Easton had been invited to be a member of a "select" little league baseball team. He could become a member of Utah's Herriman Mustangs - a hand picked team of nine-year-olds who showed enough potential to move to the next level of competition. Mustang coaches had noticed Easton on his prior season's team and felt that he would be a good addition to the team.

The first conversation was between the coach and Ryan. The next between Ryan and my daughter-in-law Rachel. It would be a bigger sports commitment than Easton or the family had been involved in before. A longer season, more practices, more tournaments, and more games. It would also be more of an investment with more travel, more equipment, and nicer uniforms. It was an opportunity that needed consideration on several levels. Ultimately the decision was to give Easton the option to decide. He considered the opportunity and chose to join the new team of boys - most of which he didn't know. From that day forward, Easton was all in. He listened intently to his coaches, asked for extra batting practice with his dad, and his appetite for a playing catch was never satisfied. It was obvious that Easton was going to do what it took to be a ballplayer. I didn't think that I could be any prouder of him, but I was wrong.

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BridgeNo matter what the obstacle is that you are facing, someone has been there before you. Find the bridge they've built that will help you on your way.

What bridges have you found and crossed? What bridges have you built and left behind for others? Your comments, suggestions, and stories of your personal edge are always welcome in my guest book.


Dad said I could

Father's Day  Pledge
Something I remember about my dad was the way he encouraged me. Not with long lessons or expressive stories. No, my dad said more with just the right few words. Here's a few that made a huge difference. Give them a try. You can do it!

"I love you.
Don't be afraid.
Give it a try.
You can do it.
Don't give up.
I'm here for you.
Nice job.
I love you." - My dad

Please leave a comment below to share what your dad gave you.  Thanks!

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Can I hang a spatula on my toe?


Imagine the gears turning...

When the wheels in a toddlers active mind start to turn and when the inner curiosity starts to take the shape of spontaneous questions, it can be a very magical time. These trusting little ones don't have preconceived opinions or points of view. They aren't trying to stump us or make a compelling point. They just wonder out loud and are open to learning from anyone who will share an answer to their many - some might say constant - inquiries. 

Mom's and dad's who recognize these magical moments and patiently respond are some pretty special people too. Today, my daughter-in-law Maegan posted this short status update on her Facebook page. I doubt that she knew how much I would smile and think about what it must have been like at her house today. 

"Do you like spiders or webs better?" "What is carpet made of?" "Where did the word mask come from?" "Can I hang a spatula on my toe?" Just some of today's gems from my inquisitive little toddler's mind...never a dull moment!

Sawyer is one of my six amazing grandchildren. There's a lot of stuff he would like to know... and his mom and dad are there to give him the answers. So... how, exactly, do you hang a spatula on a two year olds toe? Huh?

Make it a great day!

Imelda DayWhat type of day will you make?

Every workday morning I do the same thing. I record a new voice mail greeting that announces the new day of the week, the date, and informs the caller of how and when they are likely to hear back from me. To close, I end each message with one of two phrases. The first is one that I've used for nearly 40 years - "Make it a great day." More recently, I've started sprinkling in a newer version - "Make it a kind day!"

Earlier this week, I was thinking about potential topics that I'd like to add to my blog. I realized that recognizing and understanding that my day will be what I make of it has given me an edge in my career and life. I'd decided to tell share the story about the origin of my greeting and was looking through the news feed of my Facebook account when I spotted a post that validated my thought. A good friend, Imelda Dulcich, had posted an upbeat and encouraging welcome to the new day. I responded, and the rest of this blog post seemed to write itself.

This is how our short exchange looked on Facebook.

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When not doing it yourself is a win!

Lake House No Water - MedWe have a small vacation home on Lake Chelan. If you have been Facebook friends of mine or readers of this blog for long, you have had plenty of opportunities to see and hear about "our little piece of heaven." 

This spring I took the easy way out of a couple big projects. 

We hired local construction and maintenance providers to build reinforcements for our rock bulkhead and to paint the full interior of the house. When we arrived for Memorial Day weekend, all the heavy work was completed. All we had to do was straighten up the interior of the house, rehang some pictures, and enjoy our improved surroundings. 

Some people would say that I could have saved 60% by doing the work myself. Probably true. But I'm happy, the work got done correctly, and there are a few families in Chelan that appreciated the work and income. I love it when a plan has a win-win outcome! 

Sometimes the edge is in enlisting the help of others.

Kindness doesn't always happen where you first intended.


Sometimes a purposeful act of kindness isn’t meant to be. Or at least not in the time and place it was planned for. Sometimes making the effort in one place prepares you for another – one where the kindness is both welcomed and appreciated.

This morning, while on our way to a family birthday celebration, my wife and I stopped at a local supermarket to pick up the last of the gift cards that we wanted to share. On my way into the store I couldn’t help but see an older woman hunched into a ball behind an outdoor display with the few bags that appeared to hold her only possessions. In the blink of an eye, without additional information, I judged her to be homeless, hungry, and in need of kind act.

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Free Hugs

Free Hugs

The best thank you

My wife and I celebrated Easter weekend by making a trip to our home on Lake Chelan. While there we enjoyed the spring sunshine and the time together. This morning we dined at one of the state's oldest and most popular resort hotels - Campbell's. The variety and presentation of their holiday brunch was awesome and, despite our focus on healthy choices, we both made three trips to the buffet line. (Which is why I made sure to insert a four mile walk into my afternoon activities).

During our drive home, Cindy and I stopped for coffee at our favorite coffee house in the small town of Cle Elum. As we pulled into the parking stall in front of Pioneer Coffee we saw an elderly woman at a table outside the shop. She was bundled in a heavy coat and wore a purple knit hat to break the chill. Her table displayed several loaves of home made banana bread and a hand made sign describing the variety of fruits that she added to the smallish five dollar loaves.

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Lessons From A Commitment to Kindness

Kindness Button

21 Days Of Kindness

When I began the commitment, on December first, to demonstrate and record three weeks of conscious and purposeful acts of kindness, I was trying to build a habit. I wanted to see if I could apply thoughtful consideration to deliver at least one planned (not random) act of kindness toward someone who wouldn’t be expecting it each and every day. I wasn’t looking for anything in return – certainly not any form of recognition for what I would be doing. Instead, I had a second goal in mind. I wanted to see if my actions and words could potentially inspire others to make the same commitment themselves. Imagine what our community, workplace and society would be like if we all just planned out one conscious act of unexpected kindness each day.

Day one involved the simple acknowledgement of a co-worker. Day three was a back rub for my wife. On day six I left a few dollars with the cashier in our cafeteria and asked her to surprise someone with a free lunch. What I was discovering, however, was that I was waking up each morning with the thought of planning a kind act at the front of my mind. It wasn’t that nervous, anxious feeling that we sometimes wake up with. Instead it was like a daily challenge that I knew would be rewarded with a smile.

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Compassion: A Key Ingredient To Marketing's Secret Sauce

Not long ago I was invited to consider the use of compassion in the marketing world. My first thought was that compassion and marketing are words that are aren't often used in the same sentence, let alone as a dimension of strategy. The more I think about it, the more I consider that to be an unfortunate shame.

Compassion model

The way I see it, compassion has become a key ingredient in the secret sauce that enriches the flavor of truly great marketing. Compassion is certainly a key component of great content, and great content has become the currency of valued and lasting relationships. As social engagement has flourished and virtual communities have formed in newly familiar places like Facebook, Twitter, YouTube,and Pinterest, compassion and empathy have become important communication planks in the implementation of social marketing strategy. Marketers are remembering the required fundamentals for making sustainable human connections - selfless, inspiring and compassionate acts that connect brands with consumers. It's an early step in the development of sustainable relationships that begins with brand awareness and matures over time through stages of consideration, selection, renewal, referral, and advocacy.

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Advice: Find your passion. Experience Joy


Follow Your Heart

This morning, while vacationing with my wife and sister, my sister Judy - who is ten years my senior - asked me a very thought provoking question. It's a question that I've considered all day long. She asked, "Now that you are the age you are and have experienced the things you've experienced what advice would you give to someone younger - someone who is less experienced and starting out?"

I paused for a moment and thought about the importance of her question. What would a nearly sixty-year-old man who has been married twice for a combined 34 years, had 11 employers, purchased 10 homes, lived in 3 states, all while helping to raise seven children answer such an important question? As I considered her question she waited quietly for an answer. My big sister is a very patient woman.

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Grateful - Thankful - Blessed

Earlier today I saw a friends post on Facebook that caused me to pause and think a little bit. It was a challenge that urged readers to think about what they're grateful for... right now... in the moment.

Here's what the post said... "A friend, R. M., posted the following on her blog this morning: "My challenge to you, right now, is to write out ten things you are grateful for. Type them in the comments, scribble them on paper, tweet some, write them on Facebook, say them out loud. Make the choice." 

The timing was perfect. I'd been resting on the couch for nearly three days fighting a head cold that had gotten the best of me. I was beginning to feel sorry for myself and needed a little reminder that I really had nothing to complain about. In the spirit of Thanksgiving, here's my list. 
  1. For a father who modeled a committed work ethic and belief in family values.
  2. For a mother who was always there for her children and never resented a moment of the time it took to raise us.
  3. For children who have made me incredibly proud of them for their accomplishments and for their differences. And for a wife who loves me for who I am and reminds me of it daily.
  4. For the unconditional love and trust that comes from grandchildren in ways that you can only understand by experiencing it.
  5. For second chances and the ability to both accept them and give them.
  6. For all the positive people in my life who see the glass as half full - looking forward with hope and anticipation.
  7. For mentors who've believed in me - encouraging me to stretch myself, think differently, and look beyond the obvious to see what others don't.
  8. For the opportunity and resources to help make a difference in the lives of others.
  9. For the realization that no matter how difficult the challenges in my life may seem there are people who would exchange them for their own in a heartbeat.
  10. For a country that enables me to live, learn and love where, what and who I choose - and all the men and women who protect and defend our freedom.
And there's one more. It's one that those who live with me or work with me closely have come to know and understand.  I'm grateful for "Second Thought Rod" - the voice of reason and my inner compass. Without him, a lot of poor decisions would have been made.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! What are you grateful for?

Mix Thinking with Feeling For Understanding

"More important than being right, or being important, is being truly aware." - Jessica Hagy

It was one of hundreds - maybe thousands - of tweets that fly through my twitter stream on a daily basis. The odds of me seeing, opening, and exploring the link attached to this one were low. But because it was posted by a friend that I haven't connected with recently, I made the time. I'm glad I did.

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The Ace of Human


October is breast cancer awareness month. Today, my PEMCO colleages gathered for an hour long program that we call @PEMCO Live. As part of the program, I was asked to talk about the reason we chose to support the Lee Denin Day fight against breast cancer. I was asked to share the story from a man's perspective. It was tougher than I thought it would be, but I was proud to stand up and speak out against a disease that hits to many of our family members... a dissease that has come inside our home. These were my remarks:

One in eight women will have breast cancer within their lifetime. There are 100 new cases diagnosed each week in Washington State alone! Some, those that are the most fortunate of that group, will go into remission. Some are described as having no further evidence of disease. And some will die with it… but not of it. They are the breast cancer survivor’s – the lucky ones.

It's hard to talk about being a breast cancer survivor, because there is still no definitive cure. But one day there will be. Until there is, it’s important that we each find a way to – in my words – “play the ace of human.” It’s the play that trumps depression, sadness, worry, and fatigue. You see, the ace of human is love.

Clearly, I’m not a breast cancer survivor. At least not the way most of us would think of one.

I don’t have firsthand experience about the recommended monthly self-examinations, the annual mammograms, the nervous waiting, the call-backs, the needle-biopsies, the MRI’s, or the ultra-sounds. I haven’t considered the choices between a lumpectomy and the accompanying need for radiation or chemotherapy treatments, versus a single or double mastectomy where I choose to give up a part of my body.

I haven’t made decisions about whether to take a post-recovery drug that lowers my odds of breast cancer recurring but increases the likelihood of contracting uterine cancer or dying without warning due to a 1 in 1000 chance of experiencing a fatal stroke. I haven’t wondered if people would look at me differently and I haven’t had to consider a reconstructive surgeon’s opinion that there is a 50-60% chance that my reconstruction could go horribly wrong.

I haven’t done any of those things. But my wife has done them all.

Cancer Ribbon on BlkIt was on Tuesday, February 7th. I was here at work and Cindy was at her doctor’s appointment after her second mammogram in as many months. The first wasn’t clear enough and something suspicious had been detected.

It was mid-afternoon before I noticed that I’d received a text message earlier in the day. It was short and to the point. The core of the message said…

Not quite the results I was hoping for. Don't call me yet, I'm still processing the information. Biopsy on Thursday."

It’s been eight months since that day in February and a lot has happened.

For Cindy all the aforementioned tests and decisions culminated in a bilateral mastectomy. During the surgery a small number of enlarged lymph nodes were removed and tested for indications of breast cancer. The good news is that that the nodes were free of breast cancer.

The bad news is that yet another form of cancer – non-Hodgkin lymphoma – was found. No one ever said that the fight with cancer would be fair.

For me, the day that I received that text message was the day that my priorities in life became instantly clear. I learned that it’s much harder to decide what to make important when things are going good than it is when life throws someone you care about an unexpected curve.

And for us – well we became even more of a team. We attended every appointment, consultation, and procedure together. We discussed every decision… and we considered all the options together.

We were surprised by the outpouring of support from our friends and acknowledged that the thoughtfulness and genuine concern that was shown to us by others truly made a difference.

Today, I’m here to invite you to stand up to breast cancer.

   If you or your wife have been personally touched by breast cancer please stand up.

   If your mother, daughter, or grandmother has had breast cancer please stand up.

   If your sister or aunt has had breast cancer please stand up.

   If you have a niece or a cousin who has battled breast cancer please stand up.

   If you’ve had a close friend or neighbor who fought breast cancer please stand up.

   If there’s someone you know that has encountered breast cancer, please stand up.

According to the National Cancer Institute – and I quote here - "An individual is considered a cancer survivor from the time of diagnosis, through the balance of his or her life. Family members, friends, and caregivers are also impacted by the survivorship experience and are therefore included.”

You don’t fight breast cancer with a pink ribbon alone; you fight it with a team. You are all included in the survivorship experience. Thanks for standing up for the fight against breast cancer.

Thanks for being part of the team and for “Playing the Ace of Human” by sharing what’s in your heart.

Your comments, suggestions, and stories of your personal edge are always welcome in my guest book.

No Place I'd Rather Be

Rather working

There are times when we know we're in the right place at the right time. For the most part those are uniquely personal occasions that can be tied to someone or something we care deeply about. There are also situations when the right time and place has little to do with us. Instead, in those cases, it's often an occasion that shines a bright light on the life and accomplishments of someone else. Those are the times when we can learn from the experiences of a person who has lived their life in an extraordinary way.

I was in the right place at the right time on Thursday. It was the day when a legendary broadcaster, Dan Rather, was honored with a tribute that - borrowing now from the theme of his evening address - "truly mattered."

Rather with us

At noon I had the opportunity to shake his hand and meet him with my stepdaughter Abby, who just as I was forty years ago, is an aspiring communications student at Washington State University. Later that evening, when Rather was presented with the 2012 Murrow Award for Lifetime Achievement, I listened intently as he showed genuine sincerity along with moments of rare emotion while sharing his keynote address: The Power of the Murrow Legacy. During his 60-year career Rather followed frequently in the footsteps of the awards namesake, Edward R. Murrow. Whether in the field in London or at the CBS anchor desk, Rather acknowledged that he regularly asked himself, "What would Murrow do?

Earlier in the day, Rather visited classrooms where, as Murrow had done decades ago, students study to become the next generation of journalists and broadcasters in the digital age. Among the advice Rather shared were three noteworthy tips that, he said, would ensure the students would never have to worry about finding or retaining a job: 1) Learn to write, 2) Learn to write, and 3) Learn to write.

Simple and straight forward advice from a legend. I'd say that those students were definitely in the right place at the right time. And so was I.

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Parenting & Grief: Like the ocean tide

A tide
The conference room at the REI Flagship store in Seattle was filled with leaders and senior staff that guide our company's strategic direction and operational implementation plans. The meeting was part of PEMCO Insurance's Interactive Leadership Series and the guest speaker for the day was Dr. John Medina - the best selling author of "Brain Rules" and one of the country's leading authorities on how the mind reacts to and organizes information.  This was the groups second engagement with Dr. Medina and the expectation was that we would be getting deeper into the information around how the human brain can best influence accountability and trust as components of leadership.  And we did.

Dr. Medina used humor, empathy, tone and volume to keep his audience engaged. 

When he talked about the functions of the "lizard brain" he referred to the four F's - Fighting, Fleeing, Feeding, and Mating. (Yes, he said he wanted to keep his talk rated PG-13). 

He mixed in examples of "games you can't lose" like bobbing for water, and connect the dot. And along the way, sprinkled in through the course of our time together, there were some valuable non-business anecdotes and stories.  Those who listened carefully and paid attention to what was said between Medina's major points, may have come away with even greater value. I know I did.
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Steel Toed Boots

Steel Toed Boots

A date to remember

It’s an understatement to say that September 11th means a lot to our country. The horrific terrorizing events of that day in 2001 have captured a place in the hearts and minds of all who experience them, regardless of how or where we heard the news. It’s a day that must never be forgotten. Of that I’m certain most everyone will agree.

Yet as important as it is, this isn’t a post about the day that you are remembering. It’s a post about that day but not that date.

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Call For Complaints

The next time you're in a cab take a look around. What do you see that surprises you?

Rod In CabI'm not a frequent cab user but over the years I've been in my share. For my most resent business trip - instead of paying the ridiculous parking rates at Sea-Tac International - I decided to leave my car at the office and take a cab. 

After sliding into the car and exchanging the necessary information with the driver, I fastened my seat belt and looked around the cab. 

There were the expected postings of rates for time and distance, a holder displaying the drivers city issued permit and mugshot, a few novelties on the dashboard, and the always present meter that clicked up the fare in what appeared to be ten cent increments.

Nowhere in the cab had my driver, or the company he worked for, done anything out of the ordinary to make the time I spent in his cab a little more pleasant. Nothing. Nada. Zero. Zilch.

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10 Tips For Developing A Successful Career

Fork in Trail

"When you get to a fork in the road, take it" - Yogi Berra

When I meet with young people who are contemplating a business or marketing career, one of the questions I'm most frequently asked is "how do you get to be you?"  Said differently they're really asking, "what do we need to do in order to have the type of career opportunity and success that you seem to have had."

Early on I answered by sharing my resume and telling them the story of my career progression. Later, I realized that I was leaving out the secret sauce - the understanding that that a career path is not a straight line. It's a winding path that becomes a journey. One that is traveled in small steps that may not always appear to be headed in the right direction... until the path clears and the progress you've made becomes more evident. 

I've looked back on my career and listed the steps that the journey has taken me. It started by developing a work ethic when I was a young boy. Over time education and experience was added. With each small success came confidence and then courage. Courage to take bigger steps, to go down less familiar paths, and - perhaps most importantly - a realization of who to follow and when to lead.
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The Memory Box

Memory BoxThis afternoon I opened a box full of memories.

The plan was to completely clean and organize the piles and boxes of clutter that have accumulated around the edges of my home office.. It's the kind of mess that sort of grows on you. An unfinished book here, a few magazines there, a few pieces of to be recycled electrical equipment in the corner. You know the look. Some call it "organized chaos." Today was my day to get it all back into shape. 

But I made that one big mistake. Even though I knew what was in the oversized plastic storage container - the one that is big enough to double as a Costco shopping cart - I unsnapped the lid and began sifting through a lifetime of this and that. One memory after another.

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Faith, hope, and love

Cindy Rod Cruise
Looking back through my blog this morning I saw a post that I wrote last year on the day before Easter. It was focused on our twins, Abby and Amelia, and the commitment that they were about to make as an expression of their belief and faith in Jesus Christ.

The focus of my post was that five letter word - "faith" - and how much we rely on it to get through so much of our lives. Faith and trust are key components of what give us hope.

Now, a full year later, I'm once again thinking about faith, trust and hope. This year it's very personal. 

The love of my life, my wife Cindy, has been diagnosed with breast cancer. We're fortunate in some ways, because despite not being identified in her annual mammogram, enough suspicion existed that a series of five or six additional tests and examinations were conducted that made the diagnosis clear and certain. I'm very thankful for that, even though I was praying for it to be a big mistake. I must admit that there was a brief time when I was about to give up on the praying. Having someone tell you that your wife has breast cancer after weeks of praying for a different outcome can cause that to happen. Until I was reminded that finding such a small tumor was in and of itself a bit of a miracle. Of course, that's the right way to think of it. 
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Who wants a CMO for a BFF?

Insurance & TechnologyAre you and PEMCO's CIO BFF's at work?

That, or a very similar question, was what "Insurance and Technology" reporter Nathan Golia wanted to know when we concluded an unrelated conversation yesterday afternoon. Nathan caught me by a little by surprise, but I understood right away what he was getting at. He was interested in organizational silos and wanted to know whether or not I believed that CIO's and CMO's needed to collaborate more closely in order to win in the marketplace.

As I shared with Nathan, close knit collaboration and cross-functional leadership is more critical today than ever before. Previous eras were primarily fueled by a corporate focus on operational efficiency, financial performance, or product innovation. Today, in the conversation economy, the voice of the customer and the impact of social engagement has made the CMO an important best friend for members of the C-suite to embrace.  Here's the full story.

That's my opinion. What's yours?

Your comments, suggestions, and stories of your personal edge are always welcome in my guest book.

Valentine Passion

There's not a lot of Valentine Card sharing that goes between coworkers... Especially out in the open. Today I received one from two of the women that I rely on. Here's the card and the note that I sent back to them.

Valentine Analytic v Passion

Hi ladies,

I can’t get the card out of my mind. The two of you touched me this morning. Thanks.

Sometime in the last month, while in a meeting that I don’t remember now, the thought about analytics and passion appeared. I can’t even remember if I heard it or thought it. Either way, what I do remember is that it resonated with me and I shared it via Twitter and Facebook. I had several people respond to me that it resonated with as well.

To see that thought used in your card today made it all that much more powerful. I just want to tell you that. Thanks again.

Happy Valentine’s Day,


From The Guest Book - Olivia McIvor

Olivia McIvor

Bringing Her Whole Self 

I'd like to introduce you to another of the new friends that I've had the good fortune to meet during the past year. Her name is Olivia McIvor and she is a remarkable individual that was invited to provide the thought leadership for one of PEMCO Insurance's Interactive Leadership Sessions last year. 
Olivia and I have enjoyed exchanging ideas and experiences that help to identify the edges in how people live their lives. Olivia is an accomplished author, speaker, and leadership facilitator...  she's even a board member of The Kindness Foundation of Canada. How cool is that! 

I invited Olivia to contribute to my guest book and somehow she found the time. I hope you enjoy her life changing story. It's about how she discovered her edge.

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The New Currency Of Successful Brands

CMR 2012

Analytics and measurement won’t get the job done. Passion makes a huge difference. Content excellence is the critical secret sauce for winning businesses!

Thursday, January 26th, I will have the privilege of providing the opening address to attendees of the second annual Content Marketing Retreat at the Center for New Media in Langley, Washington.

That’s more than a little ironic because I consider myself to be more of a student than a teacher on the topic. In fact, as critical as I know content excellence to be, I continue to assess and shift the thinking that will ultimately be embodied in the content direction and strategy that our company, PEMCO Insurance, embraces. 

Of the things that I am most certain there is one that stands out – one that I’m most passionate about. The voice of the customer will be at the heart of our success and content excellence, regardless of the source, must be embraced, encouraged, and enabled in order to consistently win in the marketplace.

Russell Sparkman, founder of Fusionspark Media and organizer of next weeks retreat, visited my office where we talked about a variety of topics expected to be addressed during the two day event. One that he asked me to give some thought to centers on executive leadership and support for newly emerging strategies. Here are some of the thoughts that I shared.

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No New Resolutions For 2012

No resolutions

I resolve to make no new resolutions for 2012

When it comes to resolutions for 2012, I've decided to stick with the few I've made recently and to make them an important part of my focus. It seems to me that if they were important enough to resolve about in the first place - just a year or less ago - they must still be important today. An edge that I've benefitted from during in my life is that "focus is a good thing!" There's no reason to set out toaccomplish something new just because we turning the page on the calendar.
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Going To Fun

Discover Passion

If I've said it once I've said it a thousand times. I'm a very fortunate guy. My post college career has covered a span of more than thirty-five years so far. During that time I have probably "gone to work" for five or six years - and seldom for more than six to twelve months in a row. Instead, I've been "going to fun". 

Think about it. What would you rather do? Go to work, or go to fun? 

Whenever I started to get the feeling that I was going to work instead of fun, I forced myself to pay closer attention. What was causing those feelings? Was it a change in responsibilities? In management? In my office environment? Or was it something else? And how much influence did I have over the source of those feelings?

On more than one occasion, the answer to those questions helped me decide that it was time to make a change. Time to reestablish my priorities, focus on my passion, and move my career back to fun.

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Giving Thanks


What's Your Story?

Thanksgiving traditions can be special for sure. The memories from big family gatherings; the aromas of favorite foods being cooked; and the sounds of football being played in back yards and on living room televisions all come racing back to my mind.

And, as special as those thoughts are, I'm sure that there are even deeper and richer stories that deserve to be shared.

This Thanksgiving I'd like to invite you to share your stories in my guest book.  I'd especially like to hear from you about the appreciative edge you may have received or one that you've provided. Let's celebrate our stories of Thanksgiving.

Wishing you all the very best and continued happiness throughout the holidays.

Please add your story or personal edge of Thanksging to my guest book. Thanks!

Change Your Words

Change Your Words. Change Your World. 

A few weeks ago I was at a benefit luncheon for one of many worthy causes that come into our view. During the program, the master of ceremonies mentioned a powerful video that he had seen recently. It was a video, he said, that had an edge to it. One that showed how powerful the words that we choose to use can really be. 

I've long believed in the power of words. Putting the right words, phrases, and sentences together can be challenging - and oh so very rewording. When words transform the way we feel, when they create emotion and change the behavior of those around us, words seem almost magical.
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The Women Who Have "It"

mom head smallYou can sense it from across the room.

You know who they are by the look they give, the smile they share, or the words they use. They are the women who have "it" - they are the mothers. 

Today I'd like to reflect on some special memories and pay a small tribute to my mom for all she did to encourage and enable her five children to live the best life that we could.

Take a long look at your mom or into the memories of her and you will see the edge. "It" was right there with you - in your mother - all along.   Please click here to read more.

Happy Mother's Day!

Thirty Feet Up

Random Tree House - Med

The making of a sanctuary

There are times when a memory comes rushing forward from a special time and place deep within us. When that happens it can be both startling and exhilarating. That happened to me today and I'd like to share it with you. The memory is over forty-five years old and, at least for the moment, it's as clear to me as it was while I was living it as a small-town teenage boy.
This is where that memory begins.

Leadership is a team sport

The best... or Your best?Leadership Team

How many times have you heard a company, an athlete, or a coworker claim to be the best? Or maybe you've been part of a business or team who has a goal of becoming the best. Sounds good right? How can you go wrong attempting to be the best?

Read more about a personal discovery of mine here.

From out of right field!

Kicking dandelions and more. . .

Batting Practice - Med
I'm nearly 58 years old and still find myself occasionally standing in the loneliest corner of the ballpark - right field. 

The casual observer might think that nothing has changed. It's still the case that fewer balls are hit to right field.  If you're the kid in right, you spend more time counting the dandilions than chasing down fly balls.

But this weekend, a little time in right field was a time for me to reflect.
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Values, Passion & Experience

Man presenting med

The presentation edge.

Standing at the front of the auditorium with a remote microphone attached to your shirt collar is frequently described as a frightening experience - one that causes palms to sweat and voices to crack. But for me, it's a rush. I get fueled by the energy of the people in the audience and the opportunity to share. 

Sure, there's a nervous excitement that comes with each new opportunity. Thoughts go flashing through my mind about whether the video will work and hoping that the joke will get a laugh. But when that nervousness is converted to enthusiasm, the adrenaline takes over in a way that feels pretty special. Like an actor on a stage, or a trial lawyer in a courtroom, the passionate presenter knows that feeling.

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What's Your Taproot?

taproot small

Regardless of the season, your career needs Nourishment

Have you ever thought about where your career nourishment comes from? That part of what you do that gives you an amazing feeling of success and accomplishment? The part of your responsibilities that make work feel like you are going to fun and leaves you feeling proud of what you are contributing?

I hope you have. Because by thinking about these questions, and answering them, you will enable yourself to better see and experience your edge.

I've come to describe it as something like the root system of a young tree that is maturing and growing over time. I'd like to tell you a story of a career, as if it were a tree.
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Life is meant to be lived. . .

Kathy Goertzen  

"I'm Tough. I'm A Cougar."

"I refuse to let this brain tumor define who I am. I'm still me, I'm not a brain tumor. I'm still me, I'm not . . .  sick." 
- Kathi Goertzen

Sometimes when looking for the edge you find the person who has it, but you still can't identify it. When that happens, look harder and listen closer. It might be more apparent than you think.

Tonight, while skimming my Facebook news feed, I saw a familiar face - but it wasn't the same face. The person in the picture was both different and familiar at the same time. It was Kathi. The same Kathi who we've welcomed into our northwest homes for 30 years as a respected and admired local news anchor. And she looked like she was hurt. 

Her picture caused me to pause and read her story. She was, once again, preparing to do battle with a brain tumor that had been her enemy for so many years. As I read the
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Winning ethically


Using Word-of-Mouth Marketing to Win, Ethically

It's one thing to see the edge, but it's another to take advantage of an edge unethically. In this post, on behalf of the Word of Mouth Marketing Association, I share my thoughts on ethical "WOM" with PRSA members.

Know Your Why

If you don't know your why, your what and your how don't matter.

Start with Why - small

Do you remember being a child? How about raising a child? I do. And I remember that in both situations a frequently asked question was "why"? Why this, why that, why now, why not? I also remember the lack of patience that my parents had with me when I asked "why" and that the most frequent answer to my questions was a simple “because… that’s why.” I’m sorry to say that I’m guilty of repeating the same behavior and lack of patience with my own children when “why” was on their minds. I'm convinced now that "why" is one of the essential, central questions in our lives. For each of us to know our own answer is very important.

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Welcome to My World. . . At Least the Edge Of IT

January 20, 2011 - First post!

Welcome! Thanks for stopping by. I hope you are here on purpose, but even if you arrived due to some less intentional click of fate, I'm happy you are here just the same. For the moment, we are here together. On the edge of my commitment to a year of documenting thoughts and observations about the "edges" that I see and experience.

It's not the first time that I've considered making this type of writing commitment, but it is the first time I've had such clarity for the purpose. I'm not quite sure what caused it or where it came from, but I'm confident that I'm on the right path.

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The Fine Print

Rod Brooks (that's me) is VP & CMO of PEMCO Mutual Insurance Company and serves as Immediate Past Chair of the Board of Directors for the Word of Mouth Marketing Association (WOMMA).  It's important to disclose both of those relationships and to be clear that this is my personal blog where I share thoughts and opinions that are solely my own.  Contact me!

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