Lou Holtz’s Words of Wisdom

Blogging here live from San Antonio…I’ll have more on my trip down here later, but just had to share some words of wisdom from a certain keynote speaker that I’d heard today to kick off our conference. My employer has sent a colleague and myself down here for a technical forum, and our keynote speaker was famed college football coach Lou Holtz.

Holtz on stage. 18 Oct 2010.

Now I’ll be dead honest, I have next to no interest in college football, but nonetheless, I was drawn in by the anecdotes he used and life lessons he shared. Overall, a motivational speech on dreams and accomplishments and setting goals and building relationships with people, personal or business.

Lou Holtz captivates the audience with his inspiring speech. 18 Oct 2010.

Quotes of note:

“Behind any successful husband is a very surprised mother-in-law.”

“Don’t go through life and be a spectator.”

“Are you trying to get better or are you just trying to maintain?”

“If you don’t have dreams, nothing happens in this world.”

“The most important decision you make each day is the attitude you have.”

“Embrace change, not for the sake of change, but for the sake of your purpose.”

“The three rules of life. Number one: Do right. Always do right. Because then people will always trust you. Number two: Do everything to the best of your ability. And number three: Show people you care.”

“Never attack the performer, but instead the performance.”

“We need to add value to other people’s lives and that all starts with [your] dreams.”

“If you didn’t make it home from this conference, who would miss you and why?
If you didn’t go to work tomorrow, who would miss you and why?
If your company shut down tomorrow, who would miss you and why?”

“You’ll never get ahead of anyone as long as you try to get even with him.”

“I can’t believe that God put us on this earth to be ordinary.”

“If what you did yesterday seems big, you haven’t done anything today.”

“If you try to fight the course, it will beat you.”

“Life is ten percent what happens to you and ninety percent how you respond to it.” (One of my own personal mantras!)

“When all is said and done, more is said than done.”

“Coaching is nothing more than eliminating mistakes before you get fired.”

“I never learn anything talking. I only learn when I ask questions.”

“It’s a fine thing to have ability, but the ability to discover ability in others is the true test.”

“No one has ever drowned in sweat.”

“Ability is what you’re capable of doing. Motivation determines what you do. Attitude determines how well you do it.”

“If you burn your neighbour’s house down, it doesn’t make yours look any better.”

“The only people who aren’t going to be criticized are those who do absolutely nothing.”

“It’s not the load that breaks you down, it’s the way you carry it.”

“Motivation is simple. You eliminate those who are not motivated.”

“The man who complains about the way the ball bounces is likely the one who dropped it.”

“It always amazes me that spectators want to coach, coaches want to officiate and officials just want to watch the game.”

A lot of stuff that Lou Holtz put out there that was just so pertinent. Makes you think.

For that matter, the main hall in the hotel at our conference was selling all sorts of technical books, but amongst them were a few of Lou Holtz’s own books. Now had he stuck around to autograph any of his books, I actually definitely would have bought an autographed copy of something.

I’ll have more on the rest of my travels later.

Update 19.10.10: Added more quotes gathered from the speech. Added photos.

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