Sunday, March 30, 2008

Positive People



One of the smartest people I know is a friend I've had since 6th grade. In 6th grade, I was a new kid in a new school. A couple of weeks into the year, I got into a tussle with another kid on the playground - I think it was over at the teeter-totters... I don't remember exactly how it started, but it ended in blows. Back in those days, kids who got into fistacuffs could end up friends and that's exactly what happened. "Doug" became a lifelong friend.
Doug was, even back then, smart as can be, but the thing that made him special was his curious nature... about everything. I remember numerous occasions when he we would be having a discussion about some issue, whether it was politics or how turbo worked, and if he didn't have answers, by the time I saw him again, he did. Not only was he curious, but he acted on that curiosity, which, before the internet, meant you hoofed it to the library and looked up books and periodicals in the card catalog - information was not a click away the way it is now.
Fast forward almost 30 years and Doug is now involved with the Mars exploration missions and lives in California, so we don't meet often, but when we do he is as inquisitive as ever. He enthusiastically talks about the work he does and, just as enthusiastically, pumps me with questions about my work as a teacher and trainer. A cynical person might observe his curiousity and think it was faked, but I assure you it was not and is not. I have never known a friend as full of vitality and proactive in his relationships and work as Doug. A great role model to live up to.



Strive to find and cultivate postive relationships whether they are online or off. The internet provides an opportunity for networking and community-building heretofore unseen in history and it can be a challenging task to find a niche. Remember that success and intelligence are not the sole property of positive people. The internet is peppered with message boards and sites that do little more than slap each other on the backs and talk about how stupid the rest of the world is - avoid them. Find sites where constructive criticism is sought out and given, thoughtful questions are respected, and the atmosphere is open and sharing.



In your life, there are many people that are positive influences - people that make life enjoyable and educational, people who are professional and caring. There are also many who drain you - tire you mentally and physically from anger, anxiety, and drama. At work, in the gym, and in life, surround yourself with positive people - people you respect, people you'd like to be. Do you want to be like your friend who has a mean sense of humor, or the one who's constantly bitching about how he gets passed over always when it's promotion-time - or would you like to be like your friend who is happy with his lot and yet still passionate about improving it? It's nice to be needed, but we all need people who will fill us with positivity when the going gets tough, not wallow in the mud with us.

14 comments:

Dr. Mark Cheng said...

Boris, what a great post! I've been big on the idea of social synergy after reading that quote from Dr. Eric Cobb.

Too bad times have changed to the point where childhood aggression fast forwards to adult litigation.

I appreciate your encouragement and your influence on my career as a kettlebell instructor. You are one of my inspirations for doing things the way I do them.

Boris said...

Likewise Doc - I really appreciated how welcoming you were at the cert and since then have enjoyed and been inspired by your blog and postings to the DD forum. Say hello to Mike in NZ for me when you get there, will ya? He's a great guy - one of the first guys I met there on my team at the cert and saved my butt when I ran out of cold medicine.

Taikei Matsushita said...

Boris, you with Dr.Cheng next convinces me you are part oriental. Most of your video clips look like Russian girevik.

By any chance do you know John "Wild" Buckley from your Sept 2007 class? A 6 feet 6 inches tall guy from Oakland.

He might make a visit to Tokyo.

Boris said...

1/2 Japanese - you knew that, didn't you?

Yes! Big John was on my team at the cert. Great guy - a lot of fun to have as a team.

Dr. Mark Cheng said...

Matsushita-san, ask Big John about what Doc did for him at the RKC. Unless his memory fails him, he should be speaking volumes. Also, your friendly neighborhood Chinaman might be making a trip to Tokyo with another RKC Team Leader before the year's out. ;-)

Boris-san, I guess you didn't hear that I had to cancel my NZ because of this flu I'm slowly getting over with. It was supposed to be a family trip, and I didn't want to travel on a long flight and stay at a friend's house while both my son & I were sick. When I do reschedule my trip, I'll make sure to say HI to Mike for you.

Boris said...

I did know you were sick Doc and had postponed the trip. I hope you are feeling better and that you can make that family/business trip soon.

Taikei Matsushita said...

Oh yes Boris, I knew.

Dr. Cheng, by any chance the other RKC TL being former Jarhead? Would be exciting.

If I'm counting this right, I'll have a full house of RKCs this year in Japan. Includes one RKC Sr.

Dr. Mark Cheng said...

Taikei, actually the other TL I'm rolling with is kickmeister Jon Engum. Our workshop would be HEAVILY focused on 2 things - injury rehab/prehab & martial arts strength & conditioning. I figure both of those topics would please you immensely. Let me know your thoughts on that.

Who's the Sr RKC? Rif?

Boris said...

I'm going to be more than a little upset if everyone has a party in Japan without me... I'll get over it, I guess.

Dr. Mark Cheng said...

Dude, then let's hook it up!!! I gotta figure out some dates that work for both me & Jon, as well as working out the logistics for Taiwan & Korea, but why not have an RKC Symposium in Japan???

How cool would that be? And Boris, as a Japanese-fluent RKC, you'd be indispensable!

Boris said...

I'd love to go, but unless it's in the summer months, I wouldn't be able to make it. I remember now reading about Jon's testing - very, very cool...

Taikei Matsushita said...

Oh yes. Jon was assisting my RKC cert, so I'm familiar. October is it? that he has a degree test in Seoul.

Two more this summer including Big John. Trying to set up one for a man who tames iron, probably late this year.

Andy and Judy said...

Great post! A few years ago I decided to make a list of the people who had influenced me positively, and try to contact them with a word of thanks. Some I couldn't track down, one didn't even remember me, but one phoned me shortly after getting my email, thanking me in tears for my words. I was happy to be able to give a bit of joy to this man who had given so much to me. I'd suggest the exercise to anyone.

Boris said...

That's great advice and something I've been thinking about doing myself - thank you for posting it.