Look To Your Character

During my recent travels, a lengthy obit in the Chicago Tribune caught my eye. I can’t say why actually, because I have almost zero interest in sports. Accordingly, I had never heard of John Wooden. To you dear readers who are sports fans? Well what can I say?

Anyway, after reading it, I checked him out at Wikipedia:

John Robert Wooden (October 14, 1910 – June 4, 2010) was an American basketball coach. He was a member of the Basketball Hall of Fame as both a player (inducted in 1961) and as a coach (inducted in 1973). He was the first person ever enshrined in both categories.  His ten NCAA national championships in a 12-year period while at UCLA are unmatched by any other college basketball coach. Wow!!

I found a lot of wonderful quotes attributed to him, and if he really did coach in this way, I can understand why his youngsters revered him – because he guided them to winning ways (a life coach), and not only to winning games (sports).

One particular quote, which was also in the obit, stood out:

“Be more concerned with your character than your reputation, because your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are.”

Pretty good huh? Take care of your character, and your reputation will take care of itself.

John Wooden would have been in total agreement with Sri Sri Ravi Shankar (not the musician) who said something like: “How long does it take for someone to change their opinion about you? Just an instant, so why base your life on the opinions of others?

Practice Tip: When you are in conversation with person A, and if person A is saying something about person B, pay very careful attention (but be without judgement) – because although you may be learning very few facts about person B, you are learning a whole lot about (the character of) person A.

Please be kind to yourself,



About Michael Scott

Michael Scott is a life coach, author and teacher in the San Francisco Bay Area. After spending 35 years in business - coaching found him - and he's never looked back. Michael uses his coaching training and experience, in the service of his clients, as their constant and loving guide towards joyous, fulfilling lives which are genuinely their own. He lives with his dear wife in Sausalito, CA.

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