Just a thought… I am not what happened to me, I am what I choose to become. [Carl Gustav Jung]
And hello from the beautiful Hotel Saskatchewan. After a two-hour flight yesterday from Vancouver (following ten minutes in the air on an ocean/puddle jumper from Victoria) I arrived at Regina’s airport. Quite similar to that in Kelowna, I didn’t really have a chance to take in its offerings (but will today as I fly out early this afternoon).
My hopes of doing a little sight-seeing were, of course, sidelined by the more practical job that I was hired to come to Regina for to begin with! I checked in at 1 pm, made a coffee, put on my face and then grabbed a quick bite in the hotel restaurant with one of last night’s stars, CBC/podcast host, author and marketing guru Terry O’Reilly. I love this man.
And I’m certainly not alone; a woman who’s very busy organizing the Sidney Fine Arts Festival (which I’m hosting next month) is such a huge Terry O’Reilly fan that she was quoting him liberally during our first meeting. I brought with me a dog-eared copy of his book that belongs to her, so that she could have it inscribed by this inspiring author (that’s her copy of the book on our lunch table).
He happily obliged and passed on to me that he and his wife, along with Paquin Entertainment, are starting up a tour where he talks to business owners, sharing stories and wisdom from a career in advertising and marketing that has seen him cross paths with such stars as Alec Baldwin and Ellen DeGeneres. He’s a fascinating man and no matter how many times I hear him speak, I come away with just another spark for my soul’s pilot light. And getting to spend time just talking with this brilliant man gets me too revved up to sleep!
And speaking of inspiration…I wanted to introduce you to a book that I’m only halfway through, but which provided not only a wonderful bit of distraction on a cramped flight from Vancouver, but reminded me of just how a book can touch you.
Lisa Lisson is President of FedEx Canada (the first female in the company to hold that position and the first Canadian president). We met years ago when she was giving a keynote address at a women’s conference at the Metro Convention Centre and I was emceeing. (How lucky I am to get to cross paths with the most amazing people!)
About a month ago, Lisa’s publicist reached out and asked if she could send me a copy of Resilience: Navigating Life, Loss and the Road to Success. I replied in the affirmative and have made time to read it. I’m so glad I have – and that she reached out!
Lisa’s book is that rare combination of life lessons from both a business and a personal standpoint. You read very clearly the direction of vision she had for her career from an early age (she was the kindergarten teacher’s helper) and how she rose from assistant in marketing to president of FedEx in just 18 years. Her advice ranges from specific to general, but all of it is enlightening: she tells of not even opening job or partnership applications from people who sent them via their competitors (like Purolator or UPS). That makes a lot of sense.
She also shares wisdom she has passed on to her children, whom she was raising with her handsome, healthy and young husband until a tragedy befell the family. You can Google the story, but you just may want to read it instead. Lisa has laid it out beautifully – going from business lessons and stories to the struggles she faced as her husband was in a hospital bed with machines helping him to breathe. It’s quite a story!
I am grateful to women like Lisa who share their stories with others. For people who think that those occupying corner offices in high towers have no challenges or painful decisions to make, who have not made sacrifices in their own lives to help make a mark on the world, books like this might provide a glimpse into the real stories of inspiration behind the trailblazers.
Do yourself a favour and download or pick up a copy of Resilience.
As Lisa wrote in an email:
I have been reading your journals and thanks in advance for sharing resilience. When I talk with people about being resilient, I tell them that it can be learned (which I found out). It’s not one of these “have to be born with it” traits and that gives them great hope.
With love and gratitude,
Believe me, the feeling is mutual. Have an inspiring day and I’ll be back with you to wrap up the week tomorrow.