The One Thing You Must Do When the Deck is Stacked

#culturetransformation #humanresources #positiveworkculture #shrm #workpositive Mar 24, 2024

The deck was stacked against me that morning before I even started work…

I moved our daughter over the weekend which involved driving a truck and trailer for 17 hours, lifting more stuff than I care to remember, and wrestling a bear of a refrigerator to the point of physical exhaustion and sleep deprivation.

My alarm clock went off an hour early because I forgot to reset it as did my coffeemaker.

I skinned my right thumb while moving furniture. It decided to bleed on my favorite white dress shirt as I put it on that morning.

I couldn’t find a band-aid in the medicine cabinet and was forced to wake up my wife to find me one so I wouldn’t stain another white dress shirt. “Men can’t find anything,” she said. I’ll take my chances with the shirt next time.

My keys weren’t where I thought I left them which meant I hunted all over the bedroom, re-waking my wife, until I realized they were in my winter coat which I wore the previous night when unhooking the trailer…

I took a case of my best-seller, Work Positive in a Negative World: Team Edition, to put in the back of the Suburban and when shutting the lift gate, slammed it into my head. Miraculously the gate was undamaged.

As I left the garage, it started snowing and I had a 4-hour drive north.

All of this happened in one hour on one morning as I prepared to travel to speak to a group of insurance and financial services agents. Their state director was to be present which would hopefully mean a great deal of referral speaking business for me. It was a big morning.

After all of these “challenges” I wanted to take off the white shirt, and just get back in bed and sleep it off.

But I didn’t.

Instead, I just kept going.

Sure, I was frustrated…make that, angry with myself, as I left.

Sure, I was tired—make that, exhausted—as I started the vehicle.

Sure, I doubted myself and wondered if I’d make any sense at all in the presentation.

But I just kept going.

I drove down some snowy roads, my head hurting, exhausted, praying I’d make it safely.

I put a smile on my face, and presented for an hour like my life depended on it.

When it was all said and done, I received a standing ovation from the participants.

The meeting planner said, “Awesome.”

The state director joined in the standing ovation, clapping enthusiastically and the meeting planner said she’d sell him for me.

Even when it seems like the deck is stacked against you…

…just keep going.

It’s the one thing you can do to Work Positive against a stacked deck.

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