You can’t keep me down

By David Tepera, April 18, 2018

There are many well-known athletes who’ve come back from what most would think were career-ending injuries. One of the most popular names is Peyton Manning who played in four Super Bowls — winning two of them in 2007 and 2015 seasons.

I’m sure most of you remember that Manning suffered a severe neck injury in 2011, which sidelined him for the rest of the season. Everyone counted him out, including the Indianapolis Colts. The Colts decided to get rid of the perceived old man and replace him with a new young talent out of Stanford named Andrew Luck.

But, general manager and Hall of Famer John Elway saw a seasoned veteran and signed Manning to the Denver Broncos in 2012.

Within three seasons, Manning led his team to win Super Bowl 50 at the ripe old age of 39. This made him the oldest winning quarterback in Super Bowl history. He not only won, but set so many records, that I don’t have enough column space to list them.

An interesting fact: Elway was the previous oldest winning Super Bowl quarterback at 38.

After listening and watching many interviews of Manning, it was obvious, as everyone was trying to keep him down, he was determined to get back up and fight for his passion of the game.

Now, haven’t we all had or have people trying to keep us down? You’re told your ideas are stupid, you’re too fat, old, broke and worthless.

A friend of mine who’s been working for the same company for many years had an upper management change. He’s upset because they’ve changed his salary and commission structure to where he’s lost a lot of income. Obviously, he wants to quit.

I asked him, “what’s your biggest passion in life?” His reply was how much he loves to foster animals and find quality family homes for them.

I told him to start his own organization or partner with others and find a way to generate an income in the multiple avenues in the animal industry. Maybe, start a specialty pet and supplies service or store.

I don’t know what the income can produce, but once you start researching and networking, then you’ll get many ideas.

So, no matter what your situation is, don’t let them keep you down, get up and take control YOUR life.

Don’t be scared to strike-out

By David Tepera, April 11, 2018

In 1977, while I was in high school, Reggie Jackson became a household name for hitting three home runs on only three pitches to win the World Series for the New York Yankees.

Reggie was given the title as “Mr. October” for his postseason spectacular batting career, for not only the Yankees, but his time with Oakland Athletics as well.

Reggie was the home run king for many seasons expanding to 563 throughout his 21-year-career.

But, guess who had the most strikeouts than any other player in the history of the MLB? Yep, Reggie Jackson with a total of 2,597.

Don’t we all fear striking out in life? Don’t we fear standing up to the bully that keeps putting us down, starting a business, asking the girl for a date, trying something new, and so on?

How many times did you fall down learning to ride a bike, but eventually, you could ride with no-hands?

Think of every skill you’ve become an expert at and all the times you failed or struck out. None of the failures matter once you’ve mastered your craft because you were determined to be at your best. Now, you’re known as the leader in that category.

In all sports, as I watch the professional players, I think about how many times they must have failed in-order to reach the pinnacle of their skills. Yes, we will get frustrated, but our passion should catapult the drive and determination to get back up and keep pushing through it.

Maybe, you’re battling an addiction. How many times have you struck out trying to beat the habit? I’m sure each time only made you more depressed, which didn’t help to get out of the rut.

Just know, I’m not a therapist, so I always tell people to seek legal, professional and spiritual help, according to the severity of the situation.

But, I am telling you not to get down on yourself for each failure. As long as you get back up and try again, you can eventually succeed and hit that home run.

Words from the hall of famer himself Reggie Jackson, “I feel the most important requirement in success is learning to overcome failure. You must learn to tolerate it, but never accept it.”

Beauty of being “Bull in the Ring”

By David Tepera, April 3, 2018

If you’ve played sports, there’s a good chance you’ve experienced the drill “bull in the ring.” This drill typically consists of one person in the middle with everyone else circling around them.

In football, the circled players take turns hitting the bull, while the bull takes on the block or tackle.

In soccer, I had my goalkeeper as the bull, with each player rapidly taking turns firing the ball, while the keeper deflects.

In martial arts, the circled attackers would quickly take turns grabbing and putting the bull in specific holds, then the bull uses self-defense to free themselves.

The beauty of bull in the ring is that the bull learns to think fast and be quick on their feet. It’s an extremely exhausting drill that typically leaves the bull digging deep to get back on their feet and keep fighting.

How many of you can relate this to life? Haven’t we all seemed to be just moving along smoothly and carelessly, then out of nowhere, something comes along and knocks us off our feet? Now, you must think quickly trying to resolve the best outcome.

Maybe you were diagnosed with an illness or unexpected medical bills, your car suddenly breaks down needing engine repair or a new transmission, an unexpected divorce, death of a loved one or unemployment.

But, that’s just it. This is our time to be the bull in the ring. There’s no choice — you must get back on your feet and keep fighting back in this game of life.

There’s no time to play the pity party. We all have or will have extreme circumstances that change our course. You can either choose to let it define you or you can take action and make you stronger.

Sometimes playing bull in the ring in sports can leave external scars where you can wear them proudly. But, also, life’s bull in the ring will leave internal scars.

When scars heal, they leave a stronger thickened skin to protect the body from future impact. Well, guess what? You should recognize internal scars react the same way.

That negative impact should harden you, not soften. Take that experience to find determination and get back up, plus take on another challenge. Because, through time, you’ll always fight your way back in life to win the day.

Now, get ready bull because another unexpected event is coming, but you’re a warrior and will kick its butt. So, put me in, coach — I got this!