Motivation Monday: MLK Day—The Essence of Leadership

Happy Monday again to everybody and more importantly, Happy Martin Luther King, Jr. Day to everyone. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was one of the most iconic leaders of the 20th Century and one of the greatest in American history. He set a great example for others to follow, led in a way that is second to none, and literally lived and died for his true passion in life. His leadership abilities were second to none and he left the impact and legacy of a lifetime—and one that I hope and pray holds up as time progresses.

On this Motivation Monday, I would like to write a special piece on the several lessons that MLK taught and lived. Not to mention—since this is a sports law blog—the movement of the National Basketball Association in honoring MLK through jerseys, starting line-ups, and so-forth, which is a great and cool idea—especially in Memphis with the Grizzlies.

Anyways, back to the Motivation Monday Post. Of all the lessons I like to think I learned from studying MLK, there is one in particular that stuck out to me. He led and lived his life with the true essence of leadership—servanthood. In order to truly be a good leader and positive influence on those around you, you must learn to serve your fellow man or woman. This is the true essence and heart of leadership. Being a servant brings you respect and breeds others to want to do the same. This type of leadership that was demonstrated by Dr. Martin Luther King is special—mainly because not everyone is willing to do it. A leader needs a servant’s heart, and MLK definitely served the people around him with a full heart.

Not only did MLK have a servant’s heart, but he served others out of love for his fellow man. His leadership wasn’t motivated by self-gain or self-promotion; rather, his influence as a leader was dependent upon his genuine depth of concern for others.

With that said, how is it relevant to a sports law/career blog? Well, I truly believe that if you want to be a success and have the ability to influence people in a way that will motivate change and allow for prosperity, you need to have leadership abilities and values much like those of Dr. King. He was a leader, not a boss. He served and fought for his cause with a passion that was unmatched and did so with a positive attitude right alongside the “common man.” He was not simply telling others to do things for him; he went out and did the work himself. He did what he loved to do—which was to strive to unite those around him in a time of great division and bring about equality.

This lesson can be used in your pursuit of a career and in your life. It is not simply for self-gain; rather, it is to have great character which reflects your personal values. Character goes a long way when it comes to your pursuit of a career. Your character is what allows you to make it through the tough times and to continue to fight forward until you have reached your goals and aspirations. It is also your character that will show through to employers and those that you encounter as you go along. If you have a servant’s heart and genuine concern for others, it will shine like a bright light and have a much more positive effect on your aspirations and on those around you.

With all of that said, be willing to serve and to have a genuine concern for others. This is a contagious characteristic to have and it reflects the best of your values.

Finally, to finish this post, there are some things I cannot say well enough on my own and it is simply better to see the actual words of MLK in order to be motivated. So below, I have listed some of my favorite MLK quotes. I hope that they inspire and motivate. Happy Motivation Monday and Happy MLK Day!

Everybody can be great. Because anybody can serve. You don’t have to have a college degree to serve. You don’t have to make your subject and verb agree to serve. You only need a heart full of grace. A soul generated by love.

The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”

Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’”

If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward.

And one more—just because it is so iconic and takes place in the city where I am living—Memphis, Tennessee—the “Mountaintop Speech.” This is a true reflection of MLK’s character and is almost eerie, but it shows the passion, drive, and determination with which he lived his life. It also shows how far he was willing to go and how much he was willing to sacrifice to accomplish his dreams. Video is below:

 

Thank you for reading and God Bless!

–Dale Hutcherson

Election Day Post: Something We Can All Agree On… Unity in a Time of Division

Election Day—one of the most celebrated days in the United States where all can get together simply so they can divide on their opinions on who is a better person to lead the free world. While this day is supposed to provide some sort of unity among the people in that everyone has a voice in choosing the next President of the United States, it seems to be bringing more division among the masses now than it ever has. Why? Well this can be attributed to several different reasons—the polarity of the two major parties, the two main candidates starkly contrasting from each other, etc.

Whatever the case, this is not a blog post for politics, nor is it a post endorsing one candidate or another. Rather, I would like to provide a form of unity in this time of great divide among the people.

While each supporter of the parties would just assume the other candidate fall off the face of the Earth—thus is the nature of politics, business, etc.—the sports world works a lot differently.

Though sports create a sort of division among people and supporters of different teams, they also unify communities in a way that is so much different from all other forms of entertainment and things that we care about in this life.

For example—in business, Pepsi would just assume Coke be destroyed in order for their business to truly progress and take in all the profits from consumers. The two companies are not dependent on one another.

The same goes for the Presidential election. Democrats wouldn’t mind seeing Trump drop out right now and the same goes for the Republicans and their feelings towards Clinton—I know I am putting that lightly for both sides (haha).

With sports, however, despite the division among fans and the intense rivalries, the two sides are interdependent on one another. You cannot have the same sports experience without having that other side that you may intensely oppose so much on gameday. Also, despite your political affiliation—Democrat, Republican, Green Party, Libertarian—all can come together to support their favorite team on any given gameday.

There is a certain amount of respect among teams and fans that fosters an environment of intense battle when it comes to the playing field while at the same time knowing that without the opposing side, none of the sports we love would be possible without both teams. Thus is the nature of sport—two sides battling it out with a mutual respect and knowledge that one cannot be without the other.

In a country full of division (and in some cases hate), there is (at least) one thing we can all agree on and unify through—sports. So remember—no matter the outcome on this Election Day—there is a way for this divided country to become whole.

Mutually respect one another, understand that the sun will come up again tomorrow (no matter who wins the election), and realize that interdependence is okay in some situations. Lord knows we need some sort of unification now more than ever.

Thank you for reading and God Bless!

“Sports can create hope where once there was only despair.” – Nelson Mandela

– Dale Hutcherson