“Don’t tell people your goals”

Is this a good idea?

Or do I need people to hold me accountable?

I suspect the answer is, “A little from column A, and a little from column B.”

Are there positive people in your life who will help and support you? Tell them.

The crabs can stay in the dark. They’ll find out what your goals were when you accomplish them.

Get help

Most guys are bad at asking for help.

I’m horrible at it. I could win prizes for being bad at asking for help, if such a thing existed.

That’s no good.

We all know we can’t do it all ourselves. But we think asking for help is weak.

Unless you’re moving. No one thinks they should have to move all their stuff themselves, for some reason. Why is that the exception?

There’s nothing weak about needing help. Most people are happy to help. Especially the people who care about you. Sometimes they’ll even try to help without being asked. That’s how much they want to help.

I’m writing this to myself. And you.

Put your pride down. Let people know where you need their help.

I know you don’t want to be a burden. I don’t. No one does.

Are your loved ones a burden to you? Sure they are.

Do you mind shouldering that burden. Probably not, unless they’re constantly bugging you.

So why shouldn’t you be okay being a bit of a burden to them? Don’t expect them to carry all the weight, but let them help.

You won’t get very far on your own.

What is success?

Success implies greatness. Or at least above-averageness.

That doesn’t have to mean financial success.

It could mean you’ve raised great kids.

Or you have a great marriage.

Or that you’ve inspired others to be great.

Maybe you’ve quietly made a lot of little contributions to other people’s lives.

Ultimately, I think success means living your dream life, and helping others live theirs.

What does it mean to be a man?

mystery manA man is an adult male human. There’s more to it than that, though.

We learn what it is to be a man from the men around us. Usually our dads.

My dad died when I was three.

When I was little my favorite show was Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood. Fred Rogers was a big role model for me.

Fortunately both my grandpas lived into my adulthood. They lived close by for most of that time. They both enjoyed teasing their grandkids.

My mom called her dad when she needed help. Whether it was the car, the plumbing, or anything else, he was the first one on the job. I held the flashlight. I went with him to the hardware store. He built my pinewood derby cars with me. He soldered the connections on my science project, a burglar alarm. He always said I could talk to him. I wish I hadn’t been so shy. I wish I could still talk to him.

I had great scout leaders. One was the Assistant Scout Master. Assistant in name only. He loved Scouting. He was really Gung-ho for it. The Scout Master seemed content to let him take charge. He was outgoing, friendly, and full of energy. He became the Explorer Leader around the time I became an Explorer. I wouldn’t have gotten very far in scouting without him. He died too young. I named my youngest son after him.

I didn’t get serious about my Eagle until I was sixteen-and-a-half. Another great leader helped me get it. I had a ton of merit badges I had to earn. He acted as counselor for almost all of them. He was also on my Eagle Board of Review. Another member of the board tried to persuade the others I hadn’t satisfied the requirements. He persuaded them I had. We were both active in the Order of the Arrow. I believe he was the one who nominated me for the Vigil Honor.

I’ve had a lot of good bishops. One was bishop of a singles ward I attended. Whenever he needed inspiration he would sit back and close his eyes and wait. He was always kind, never harsh or judgemental. I never felt like I couldn’t talk to him.

Then there are the action movie star types. John Wayne. Clint Eastwood. Bruce Willis. Harrison Ford. Arnold. Sometimes I wish I was more like them. Tougher. Less emotional.

The Ultimate Man, though, is our Heavenly Father.

He’s who we came here to be like.