Latest stories

My latest book will be available: July 13, 2022

M

If Gold Is Our Destiny If Gold Is Our Destiny: How a Team of Mavericks Came Together for Olympic Glory by Sean P. Murray Pre-Oreder Your Copy Today Leadership lessons from a gold-medal winning team You’ve heard of the Miracle on Ice, the improbable victory of the U.S. hockey team over the Soviet Union at the Lake Placid Olympics in 1980. And maybe you’ve heard of the Boys in the Boat; the 1936 U.S. crew team that stunned the world by beating the Germans at the 1936 “Nazi” Olympics in Berlin...

Updating Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs

U

Maslow’s theory of human motivation had a huge impact on me when I first learned about it from my father, who was well versed in it as he had a Ph.D. in Educational Psychology. I vividly remember, as a teenager, sitting across from my father at our kitchen table, while he sketched out “Maslow’s Pyramid” on a napkin. At the bottom of the pyramid were the physiological needs of food, water, shelter and safety. Without access to these essentials we operate in extreme emergency mode since the lack...

Maximize the Gift

M

I lost my father in 2021 and his death provoked a lot of reflection on mortality, including my own. The fact that we’re all going to die someday is sobering and frightening on one level, and yet it also infuses our life with meaning. In his book Four Thousand Weeks, author Oliver Burkeman writes: “It is by consciously confronting the certainty of death, and what follows in the certainty of death, that we finally become truly present in our lives.” The “four thousand...

Steve Jobs on the Creative Process

S

It’s been ten years since Steve Jobs died and to commemorate his death, Jony Ive, Jobs’ longtime friend and collaborator at Apple, wrote a short piece in the WSJ.  It’s a beautiful reflection on their friendship – it’s obvious the two men had a deep respect for one another – but it also describes how Jobs approached the creative process and reveals insights we can apply to our own creative endeavors. Creativity begins with curiosity.  To imagine something new and bring it into the...

What’s Your Personal Vision?

W

A Path in Oregon. Source: Sean P. Murray Richard Hamming makes a stunning observation in his book Learning to Learn: “The main difference between those who go far and those who do not is some people have a vision and others do not and therefore can only react to the current events as they happen.” – Richard Hamming in Learning to Learn It’s easier than ever to spend our time reacting to current events – just browse Facebook, scroll Twitter or bounce among your favorite news sites on your...

Leadership Lessons from “The Charge of the Light Brigade”

L

The Charge of the Light Brigade on October 25, 1854 was a disastrous mistake, the result of misinformation and miscommunication. “Forward, the Light Brigade! Was there a man dismayed? Not though the soldier knew Someone had blundered.” Alfred, Lord Tennyson’s poem, The Charge of the Light Brigade, immortalizes an ill-fated British cavalry charge during the Crimean War. The poem mostly celebrates the bravery and glory of the officers who participated in the charge, but in a famous...

Action This Day

A

Original “Action This Day” label used by Winston Churchill during WWII. Churchill’s life provides so many stories and examples of grand leadership (See: 7 Leadership Lessons from Winston Churchill), that it’s easy to overlook some of the simple yet powerful productivity practices he utilized to successfully administer the War effort for Britain during World War II. One of my favorites is what he called: “Action This Day.” Upon becoming Prime Minster in 1941, the situation in England...

A Crisis has the Power to Transform

A

“Instead of social distancing, how about physical distancing?  Words matter.”  It was a message that came across my Twitter feed from Brad Stulberg – a recent guest on The Good Life Podcast – and it hit me hard.  He continued the tweet: “Now, more than ever, we need to be socially CONNECTED. The only way we get through this—both biologically and psychologically—is together. Action. Attitude. Support. Kindness. It’s all contagious.”– Brad Stulberg Aristotle famously...

Trillion Dollar Coach

T

In 1979, after six straight losing seasons as the head football coach at Columbia University, Bill Campbell resigned.  During his tenure the team won 12 games and lost 41.  He didn’t blame the failure on his players, rather he put it squarely on himself.  To succeed as a football coach, he believed, one needed a quality he called “dispassionate toughness,” and he didn’t have it.  By his own admission, he had too much damn compassion for his players.  “I tried to make...

The Good Life Podcast

T

About ten years ago I started listening to podcasts while traveling on airplanes.  Suddenly, the time I previously spent battling the airplane wi-fi and trying to win the arm-rest battle while in the middle seat (I got very little work done), was replaced with learning.  Those early podcasts motivated me to read more.  Soon I was listening to podcasts while running, which in turn, inspired me to start writing more.  And that, inevitably led to this...

Recent Posts

Archives

Categories