Determination: It will pay off!
By Scott Turner
As we look throughout history, we find that this great country of America was built on the backs of those who had an unwavering determination. It did not matter the trials or the difficulty they faced. It was not predicated on the adverse situations that seemed to surround them as they built families, farmed the land, established towns and cities and created businesses. As I think about our country’s history and how it would have been if I were a part of the toil and labor that it took to build the infrastructure and lay the foundation on which we, a privileged people, now stand, I have to say that the level of determination set the standard for achievement and overcoming adversity we admire today.
While playing in the National Football League, I was faced with many situations that required extreme determination! Yes, playing in the games on Sunday afternoon calls for a great deal of toughness, grit, strength, and commitment, but you must be determined to overcome adversity, pain, mistakes and failure in order to be successful. Your opponent is doing everything in his power to outmaneuver you, to break you and ultimately beat you down. Well, I had the same attitude towards them! I was not willing to give up an inch. I was determined to hold my ground and not allow the opposing receiver or ball carrier to catch the ball or gain one yard! Now, it didn’t always work out that way but that was my attitude.
There were always opportunities to give up and throw in the towel – or, more importantly, my career! — during the course of the games. Before I ever put on an NFL uniform, I was told that I would never play professional football. Before I set foot in an NFL locker room, I had faced much adversity, trial, doubt and negative criticism from others. It would have been very easy for me to bow out and not see my dream realized, but I thank God that He gave me a strong determination to not give in to what “people” said and not give up on the “vision” He gave me when I was a little boy growing up in Plano, Texas!
What is your vision? Are you determined to see it come to pass and live out your dreams? Along the way, you may face trials and tribulations and have doubt. You may have those that are close to you tell you that “it will never happen, you can’t do that.” You may even fail a time or two, but I encourage you to never give up, never throw in the towel and bow out. Be strong in your faith and have a great determination that says “I will, in spite of….!”
By Blake Lindsay
People often ask me, “Why are you no longer a deejay on the air somewhere?” I’m happy to explain with a story that has an unenthusiastic beginning, however, has a very positive reassuring ending. If you are experiencing a career transition, or know someone who is, I hope this life lesson I learned will help.
I had worked with KISS-FM in Dallas, TX, for more than seven years, which seemed to me like a respectable milestone that I was excited about continuing. I loved performing each weekend, especially when I had the opportunity to fill the shoes of our morning man, Kidd Kraddick, during his vacations. Then, one day, all three of us part-time staff were laid off. This was a test along the way to transformation. Transformed people must be resilient and spring back when faced with obstacles and career setbacks.
Much to my surprise, I became re-energized in 2005 concerning my broadcasting career. My radio mentor, John King, asked me to cut a few promos for WJEL. I certainly didn’t consider this promo opportunity to be a priceless experience, in a brand new role, known in the broadcasting business as voice talent imaging. Imaging is the common word, which simply means branding. For example, my voice is instrumental with communicating the purpose of listening to that specific station. In some instances, I might promote the station’s upcoming events, contests or perhaps the station’s identifications. Learning this fresh skill, and getting some practice, was more valuable to me than money would have been at that time. I was also thrilled to be finally concluding my four-year absence from my broadcast profession. With the help of my friend Jim, I learned how to do my work in my own studio and send out the finished product via email.
A lesson that was reinforced to me here is that there is really no self-made successful person. It takes other people to be a success in life. Think about that. You need colleagues, partners, employees or clients, and possibly all of the above. Collaboration and building strong partnerships such as this are critical to be successful in today’s fast-paced world of rapid change.
As my friend Zig Ziglar would say, “Learn to win here before going there!” This is precisely what began happening for me. Before long, my next door was opening. Another friend, Larry, purchased a radio station in Paris, Texas. Larry was confident my imaging would also help him launch his brand new station. These two radio stations were enough to provide plenty of experience and momentum to develop my new knack in broadcasting.
John King, Larry and Jim all were active in helping me transition into voice talent production. My brand new business is called Blazin’ Blake Productions, using the radio handle I am known for on hit music stations. My voice is also heard on several commercials that are broadcast nationwide.
When transforming into a new skill, try to make every engagement or opportunity a win-win. John’s request for promos to billboard WJEL’s upcoming reunion was the precise push I needed to see my brand new vision through. In the transformation process you have to continually work on staying open-minded. It is intriguing how sometimes the occasional unsolicited career changes that we encounter usually find some way to challenge us by making us even stronger rather than stopping us. I encourage anyone in a job or career transition to be resilient and to positively look for a new door to open when one seems to close. Life is a series of entering and exiting. I have learned that how you exit one event or era affects how you enter the next. So exit gracefully and well as you enter into the next opportunity.
I have also learned that when we are forced to seek new and perhaps better opportunities our hidden talents frequently emerge. That is the process of being transformed by turning the lemons of life into lemonade. Doing our very best to remain hopeful, resilient, stay confident, and keep a positive attitude is most important through these career changes and professional transformations.
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