Dr. Kenney’s Friday 5 Spot
On Fridays I like to share some of the experiences I’ve had during the week with patients and in my personal life that I’ve found significant in some way. I like to share them in hopes that you might find value in them and have something resonate with you in your life.
A concept I took from coaching that I apply to life. Years ago, as I was beginning to coach, I happened to run across the saying “you are either coaching it or allowing it.” Quite simply, this means that you are either encouraging a certain behavior or it is permeating because you have failed to address the problem. If my players are not hustling, arguing, not following instructions, etc. then it is my fault either because I taught it to them or allowed it to continue. There are few situations that can’t be brought back to the simple question of “am I coaching this or allowing it?”
It is also excellent advice for everyday life. If you are around negative people, then you taught them to be that way or failed to get away from them. If you’re not meeting your goals and are unhappy, you either want it that way or are unwilling to do what it takes to get to a better place. With everything you do, you are either manifesting something or letting it happen.
Something I do not like to hear and what I prefer to do instead. “It’s really tough so I’m…” I hear a version of this all the time, and it usually begins with a desired outcome or behavior and then is followed by an excuse taking the form of “but it’s hard.” We’ve all done this, but the reality is that almost anything worth doing or achieving will be hard. I’m yet to read the biography of someone that talks about how easy their life was on the way to success or triumph.
Rather than spend time explaining and focusing on why something is so hard, deconstruct it for yourself. What are the hurdles? How can you overcome them? What would be a solid first step to solving the issue? I find that taking these simple steps changes something that seems too hard or overwhelming and feeds you confidence that you might just be able to succeed after all!
I concept I take from my athletic career and use regularly. When I played football in high school and college, I learned the term “playing hurt.” This doesn’t mean that you play through serious injuries but refers to getting out there when you aren’t at 100%. Maybe you’re sore, slightly hobbled, feeling sick, unmotivated, don’t feel like being there, etc. but you still go and play.
I have found this invaluable in life as well. My job is to help my patients who are not feeling well. As a result, I never miss work unless it’s for an event or vacation. When my life has gone through turbulent times, haven’t felt well, have been in physical pain, you name it, I have still been there, and my patients never know because I refuse to show them, I’m not at full strength. I use this in other aspects of life is well, but the point is, most of us are rarely at 100% and there will always be reasons to quit, skip, or avoid our responsibilities. The best policy is to suit up and show up unless you absolutely cannot, and those instances are extremely rare!
A great practice to either begin or continue. I am a huge proponent of alone time. It is not because I want a break from my family or patients, merely because the time alone allows me the time to get myself properly primed for the world and situations around me. Sometimes I take this alone time before anyone is awake, sometimes while running, other times just pulling weeds in my yard. Regardless of how I go about it, I take some time to think through issues, prepare for things of importance and reflect on things I can improve. Make sure you find some time for yourself in a day so that you can do the same!
Something I told my sons recently. My oldest son is on the high school football team. One of the players has a form of autism (this is my diagnosis based on what I’ve seen and know). At a practice last week, he came up and began talking to me and my two younger sons. He was very kind and polite and was especially nice to my 3-year-old. I really found him to be a good kid. From a distance, I noticed a few of the other players kind of mocking him and at their game the next day, they chanted his name but not in a way that I felt was meant to support him, but rather as if he were the butt of the joke. I was mad and upset. My son had no role in it (and was unaware it even happened because he was playing so much, plus he wouldn’t anyway) but I shared my feelings with him and his brother.
I told him that anyone that would make fun of someone or mock someone like that was inherently insecure and weak themselves. These are never the type of people you want around you because they are always the first to leave when any challenge arises and will follow the pack regardless of whether it is right or not. Furthermore, I expressed my admiration for the young man who was willing to show up with no friends on the team and play an incredibly physical sport, all with a smile on his face. That type of person is someone I want around because they are strong in the face of adversity and never abandon the people they care about. Most of the toughest and most successful people I know would never take the time to put someone else down but will always take the time to lift someone else up. Be that type of person.
Some quotes I love.
“I just told my wife “I’m sorry we have to raise children in these dystopian times.” She recalled a quote she read just today: “Never feel sorry for raising dragon slayers in a time where there are actual dragons.” – someone sent this to me, not sure where it’s from
“The greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance; it is the illusion of knowledge.” – Stephen Hawking
“When the whole world is running toward a cliff, he who is running in the opposite direction appears to have lost his mind.” – C.S. Lewis
“Nobody is coming to save you. So, save yourself.” – Ray Care
“If you can’t win in an imperfect circumstance, you are not good enough to win it. If everything has to be perfect, then you have to get better.” – Kyle Dake
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