RIP To Good


RIP To Good

When you were young, what is your earliest memory of an answer to the question, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” Think back. Do you remember? Who asked you? Maybe a better question is, who didn’t ask you? It seems every adult wants to know what every kid they know wants to be when they grow up. What was your answer? How many times has it change through the years?

My answers changed. During my little league years, I wanted to be Alan Trammell, the Hall of Fame shortstop for the Detroit Tigers. After that, I wanted to be (hold your laughter please) President of the United States. As a teenager I wanted to be a stockbroker…right until I saw the movie Wall Street. And the list goes on and on. Never was my answer a personal success coach, talent acquisition guru, and part-time writer for my local paper. Never.

What does this have to do with this week’s article title, you may ask? When you were little and you wanted to be a doctor, or a vet, or an astronaut, or even President of the United States, did any adult sit you down and outline just how hard that choice would be? Did they tell you about all the school needed to become a vet? Did they talk about the hours required to spend in study and residency to become a doctor? Or did they just smile and encourage you to ‘go for it,’ like all of my adult circle did? Sure, some told me I would have to work hard, or study a lot. I knew that much. But no one scared me out of my dreams. It turns out, I did. I was very, very good at doing that without anyone else’s help. Sound familiar to any of you?

It turns out, I was a good student. I knew how to study and work for good grades. I put in good work. I was a good little leaguer and pretty darn good baseball player. A great yet painful lesson was learned by being good at something. Being good is terrible at making you great. It’s been said that good is the enemy of great. That is true. Working hard enough to be good at something is a wonderful thing. But all too often, we let good be good enough. My dear Tribe of Up friends, let me put forth a suggestion for all of us. Let’s kick good’s tail and find things to be great at. Let’s rekindle passions, pet projects, hobbies, or career aspirations, do the work that hurts, that makes that voice in your head scream to not do it because Deadliest Catch is coming on at 9:00 tonight. Great is waiting. Good is in the way. Good doesn’t want great. Great makes good obsolete. Let’s put the work in to be great at something. The first thing I have chosen to be great at is to be nice. I know what some of you are thinking. Really? Come on! No, really. I am choosing to be great at nice. In today’s world I can assure you dear friends, it is not an easy thing at all. But like all people, sometimes good comes out, but it isn’t completely there within. It’s the within I’m working on. By changing attitudes, paradigms, and the inputs, (what I read, watch, and have a good think on) I am trying to make nice a great thing for me.

What is something worth the cost of a little discomfort, a little time, a bit of energy, and maybe even a few bumps and bruises to take your good to great? I’ve had more than a few people reach out and wonder if a tribal meet up could ever happen. Some folks want to get together and truly create a support group of up. What an idea. If there are enough of you out there, let me know. I think a meet up over a coffee or diet Coke to talk about all things up would be a terrific idea. The first item on the agenda is to create a personal list of the things you want to put a RIP to good next to so we can make them great.

It’s gonna hurt. It’s going to be uncomfortable. Great is never easy. That is why so few people achieve it. But if we really want to advocate for more joy on this little rock spinning in space, great is the bell we must ring. In the Tribe I trust!

Steve Gwisdalla is a Dexter resident and the Owner, Chief Cook and Bottle Washer, and Kindness Officer of BetterPlace Consulting, a business dealing in all things people. If you are a people and need some help turning a good thing into a great thing, reach out to him at

I'm interested
I disagree with this
This is unverified