Ralf Weiser's Blog – Shake Up Your Snow Globe! ©

Stop doing, shake your globe, ponder, enjoy, start being – live on purpose and do it with a smile!

Victory favors preparation

Victory favors preparation Mythbusters in Philly Nov 2014

Victory and mastery not only end with the same letter, they are also very much connected with each other. Though there is surely always a little bit of luck involved whatever we do, in large victory is more about the preparation you have put into whatever you set your mind to. Sometimes it may even help save your life.

I was just reminded of how important practice and training is when I to a Mythbusters Live show in Philly. Adam Savage @donttrythis shared with the audience how he almost did not make it out of a submerged in water and upside down car. The experiment was how difficult it would be for a person to get out of a car that went into a lake. He almost drowned when he got disoriented as his eyes started to burn trying to see in the water without goggles. I

t turned out later that the old car they had used in the experiment had been cleaned, but the previous owner had smoked heavily and all the old smoke and ashes had messed up the water quality and thus contaminating Adam’s eyes (Details here). Surprised by this he inserted the breathing apparatus upside down resulting him to “breathe” in a little water (Discover what happened here). He almost panicked, but recalled an important practice preparation saying: “Only the calm survive”. He mentally forced himself to calm down and subsequently corrected inserting the breathing mask eventually escaping out of the submerged car. Can you imagine how scary this must have been?

Bottom line is that whenever you want to win or excel (or simply survive) at anything in life you have to practice, practice, and practice. Victory favors preparation.


Be the type of person who leaves a mark, not a scar

Be the type of person who leaves a mark, not a scar Smaller FB

So goes the quote of an unknown source. People who leave emotional and physical scars just don’t get it. Violence and aggression lead to nothing but dead ends. Love, trust, collaboration, empathy, and compassion breed creativity and inspiration. Either direction will leave an imprint in your memory for a long time, but only the positive one will be inspiring and long term sustainable.

Try the following role play with a partner helping illustrate how limiting negativity is. One person starts with the following sentence: “I am going to build a swimming pool and it will not…:. Here add features, things, anything that is not going to happen, or will not be a feature. Once the one person finishes the other one will think of yet another thing that the pool will not feature. Try, and I mean really try hard keeping this going for at least 3 minutes.

Now repeat the same procedure, but start with the following sentence: “I am going to build a swimming pool and it WILL HAVE…” Now add anything you would like for the pool to be tricked out. I am sure you are catching the drift here. After 5 minutes of this exercise compare how both exercises went for you. Which one was more fun? Which one took longer for you to find thinks you wanted to say next? Which version was more creative? The negative stance is no fun, is it? It is actually so much harder to do.

The outcome of this little spiel helps illustrate how people leave a mark that will stay with us forever because they lift us up. Scars are just a vivid reminder of bad experiences and what not to do in the future.

Which one do you like better? How can you leave a positive mark with people?


When some people develop a weak set of knees when it comes time to take a stand for themselves

When some people develop a weak set of knees when it comes time to take a stand for themselves Ralf a

Quite a while ago while being in the German Army, I was responsible for wheel and track vehicle maintenance in a tank battalion in Northern Germany. Among those vehicles our unit had to take care of was the base commander’s Jeep. One day his driver picked him up from the base to take a ride through the base. Eventually they were flagged to stop the Jeep immediately: Three wheels were so loose that they were in the process of coming off the car. The lug nuts had come loose!

How could that have happened? In the investigation that followed the incident, it turned out that the Jeep had just come back from our unit. Guess who had been responsible for taking care of that car while it was repaired? Oh yes, yours truly and a brand new draftee had worked on the brakes and thus the wheels had been off and were subsequently put back on by the two of us.

My face went bloodless and I turned very pale thinking about what kind of accident could have possibly happened. That was a responsibility I had not been ready to accept. Once the new draftee and I had a little time to reflect on the situation it occurred to us that we had indeed tightened the wheels correctly – all four of them. It was still very tough insisting that we were innocent and that the true cause for the loose lug nuts should really be pursued further. The panel interviewing – sorry, grilling – us put us through the wringer. In fact it was so bad that I almost gave up “admitting” something that I had not done just to get this nonsense done and over with.

We stuck to our guns and did not relent. A little while later it was found out that a small group of very mischievous soldiers had loosened the wheel lug nuts of this Jeep just for fun. Who would have thought that? Thank God we did not relent and the investigation was not closed. Can you imagine if they hadn’t gotten caught?

Don’t get weak knees standing up for yourself – it is totally worth it.


“Papa, please take my allowance money and give it to this homeless organization”

“Papa, please take my allowance money and give it to this homeless organization” 20150116_162427

Picture credit: Ralf Weiser

That is what my son said to me during our recent stroll around Times Square NYC. At a loss for words, I gave what would have been his pocket money for the month to the nice man who was collecting for a local church led initiative helping the homeless in the area. “Dad, this will buy at least 20 warm meals for them!”, my son exclaimed with his face lit up like a Christmas tree looking at the services the church provided. What does one say to that? I was speechless.

Just 5 minutes before that he had contemplated getting a super hero Build-A-Bear for himself, but he wanted to think about it for a little while. So we went up and down Broadway before we ended up stopping at the homeless initiative’s street booth.

10 minutes prior to hitting the Build-A-Bear shop, we had come across 2 homeless people. They were covered in at least 3 blankets each and only their faces protruded from them. It was a nasty wet 27 degrees F (around -3C) outside and my son and I could only keep warm by dressing up warmly and having a set of warm mittens, scarves, and hats on. How did they manage to stay warm? It obviously had been on my son’s mind.

Isn’t it fascinating that we consider the fate of others so much better when their hardship stares us in the face? I cannot fathom being homeless with no one expecting you, no one there who really cares, or LOVES you? If this little story will help blessing or really helping one single homeless person my son and I have fulfilled our purpose.

Next time you pass by a homeless person (see picture above) try stopping and really looking at the person. Ponder the situation that brought them there. We may not be able to single handedly save them all, but saving one single soul at a time would sure make a difference if more of us did this. Check out Ron Hall’s and Denver Moore’s story “The same kind of different as me”. A real story about a modern-day slave, an international art dealer, and the unlikely woman who bound them together (Details here). It is an awe inspiring story of how a homeless man with seemingly nothing to share saving the soul of the art dealer who had everything – and nothing at the same time.

If you could think of how you could help someone or some cause, what would that be?


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