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One of the most intriguing stories I’ve ever read is the story of a Spanish father and son who had become estranged. The son ran away and the father set out to find him. He searched long and hard for many months, but to no avail. Finally, in a last desperate effort to find him, the father put an ad in a Madrid newspaper. The ad read, “Dear Paco, Meet me in front of this newspaper office at noon on Saturday. All is forgiven. I love you. Your father.” On Saturday, 800 “Pacos” showed up, looking for forgiveness and love from their fathers.
The last time I was in Melbourne, Australia, a mother came to me and told me her story. Her two daughters, six and nine, were having all kinds of emotional difficulties, including a reversion to infantile behavior. She took the advice I give all parents, namely to repeatedly tell your child that you love him or her. She explained that in 32 years of life, no one had ever told her they loved her, and she had real difficulty breaking through that barrier.
Finally, one evening she simply blurted out to her two daughters, “Girls, I just want you to know I love you.” They both were momentarily stunned, then they hugged and kissed her and all three shed many tears. They promised each other that from that point on they would never go to bed without professing their love for each other, and that they would start every day in the same way. It was awkward at first, but soon not only were they doing it twice a day, but several times each day. The mother told me that after sixty days of this loving approach to her daughters, over 90% of those psychological problems had disappeared.
It’s true – love, real love, never fails. Apply real love to your relationships and I’ll SEE YOU AT THE TOP!
Zig Ziglar is known as America’s Motivator. He authored 33 books and produced numerous training programs. He will be remembered as a man who lived out his faith daily.
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Question: How would you feel if you lost an Olympic Gold Medal by two-thousandths of a second? You probably wonder, “How could they measure that closely?” Mathematically speaking, the distance you can swim in two-thousandths of a second is about the thickness of a coat of paint or about one-tenth of the time of a typical eye blink. To have worked years and years and to have been so close to the ultimate prize and yet miss it by that length of time in a four hundred meter individual medley, must have been a difficult pill to swallow.
That very thing happened to American swimmer Tim McKee. The event took place in the 1972 Olympics in Munich when Olympic swimming timing had just “converted from stopwatches to the use of electronic touchpads.” At that time stopwatches were “still sliced no finer than a hundredth of a second,” but the just-installed electronic touchpads could measure the distance to the thousandths of a second. McKee had tied for first place with Gunnar Larsson of Sweden to the hundredth of a second, according to the stopwatch, but lost by two thousandths of a second, according to the electronic touchpad.
To make the matter even worse, at the meet in Los Angeles in 1984, gold medals were awarded to both swimmers who had tied to the hundredth of a second. I’m certain the disappointment was intense for Tim McKee, but in life we have many disappointments. Those who go on to greater things dwell on the disappointments briefly and then move on. Tim realized that his entire life was still in front of him and whether he won or lost the gold medal he would always have his innate ability, drive, character, determination, love, commitment, responsibility, and all of the other things that help make him successful in life. He was later inducted into the University of Florida Athletic Hall of Fame and the International Swimming Hall of Fame.
I hope you decide to make your disappointments a springboard on your journey to the top. SEE YOU AT THE TOP!