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A person who I had the utmost respect for recently passed away just before his 100th birthday:  Coach John Wooden.

Many of you probably know of him and have seen a lot about him in the last couple of weeks since his passing.  Here's just a couple facts:

  • Basketball Hall of Fame (first person ever enshrined as a player and coach)
  • 10 NCAA championships in 12 years, seven in a row from '67 to '73 (a feat never matched by any other coach)
  • His UCLA Bruins won 88 games straight and had four undefeated seasons (no other NCAA coach has more than one)
  • He developed the "Pyramid of Success" which has become an organizational and inspirational tool for coaches, businesses and corporations world-wide (print it out and put it on your wall)
  • Honored by Sports Illustrated as "Sportsman of the Year" (1972) and by ESPN as "Coach of the 20th Century" (1999)

All basketball success aside though, Coach Wooden's real legacy will be as an irreplacable source of wisdom.  He understood that greatness is all around and he demonstrated an uncanny ability to help others find it within themselves and realize it.

Below I share a short story about him and his 7-point creed for greatness.

John Wooden's 7-Point Creed for
Making the Most of Oneself

I think the best story that comes from the many about Coach John Wooden is one that stems from his father, Joshua Wooden.  His Dad was instrumental in shaping Coach Wooden's character. He gave him a seven-point creed to live his life by, and Wooden kept that same sheet of paper with the handwritten creeds in his pocket for decades.

When the paper was finally worn out, Wooden had cards of the creed made, and he handed them out to others.

The seven creeds aimed at making the most of oneself are:

1. Be true to yourself.

2. Make each day your masterpiece.

3. Help others.

4. Drink deeply from good books.

5. Make friendship a fine art.

6. Build a shelter against a rainy day.

7. Pray for guidance and give thanks for your blessings every day.

That my friends is IMPACT and I thank Coach Wooden for the wisdom he passed down to many, many generations.  A legend will be missed!

Peace Coach Wooden, (1910 to 2010).