Words Crafted Into Stories…

Create Positive Feedback Loops — 9:25am yesterday morning I received a text message. A buddy of mine who I have not heard from in a while. A successful entrepreneur who I enjoy talking with as we bounce ideas off each other and provide honest feedback for problems we are both trying to solve. Knowing how busy we both are I completely understood why he never read my newsletter, until now. “Time” is a very precious asset we all must cherish and spend wisely. So, when I received this text from my friend the feeling was amazing. It stopped me in my tracks. I parked the car, shut off the engine and read his text message… not once, not twice but five times. Every time I read the words I asked myself different questions: Why did it take so long for him to open my letter… I’ve been sending them for 18 months? What did he read in my letter that would motivate him to send me a text message? Man I wish we could hook up more often and share more stories? How is he doing? I’m so glad I wrote that letter this month to reconnect with him. Sitting back reading this message from a buddy of mine it gave me a chance to reflect on “The Power Of Words” an email I sent out a while back: http://www.timkmurphy.com/whats-on-my-mind/beliefs/are-they-just-words-on-paper-or-do-they-have-power/ As I was reflecting I took into account the emotions a simple little text message like this, from a buddy,
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Everyone gets knocked down in life… The real test — getting up

Bam! She got hit in the mouth and went down… That’s what it felt like earlier this year when we found out our daughter, Ireland, made the “C” team for traveling softball. She worked so hard in the offseason to get better on her throwing, hitting and catching knowing tryouts were a big deal this season. We all kept rooting her on. Then, we got the news. This was the first time we had really been vested in sports and the process of tryouts and making a softball team. I’ll never forget those times when I was a kid. As a parent, it’s 10x more intense. You just want to get out there and do it for them. Ireland was devastated, tears started rolling down her cheek, she lost her breath as she started to gasp for air; then she started crying. As a parent this is the most helpless feeling you will ever have when it comes to parenting. The reality of competition just hit home. That’s when your fight or flight instinct kicks in. “Ireland, you don’t deserve this. You are better than this. There has to be some kind of mistake.” I said. Mom, coach and long time collegiate softball player herself, starts running through all of the players out loud. Trying to determine why Ireland landed on the “C” team. After hours of talking it through we both said to each other, “This is a mistake!” Then I thought to myself, Wow! this is so real.
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Leader, Manager & Operator all at the same time…

“Wow!……… I’m speechless Murph, give me a second.” Scott said, as he looked to the sky, then looked down at the table and gradually put his hands on his head pulling his hair back. You have to know Scott to appreciate this moment of silence. Scott is the type of guy who can walk in a room and light it up. Kind of like Norm when he walks into CHEERS. “Norm!!” everyone shouts as he walks in the door. Scott, is a man who wears his heart on his sleeve, will give the shirt of his back and loves nothing more than a good conversation. Coming from a military family Scott knows what it means to work hard, do the right thing and treat others with respect. His military father instilled these military principles in him. You can just feel it. Quickly, Scott lifted his head to say, “Bro, I knew you wanted to talk today. But, I didn’t know you were going to completely blow my mind.” Scott said, with a passion in his voice that moved me. He then said, “Murph, you need to understand something about me. I was raised by a military father in a military home. He loved me. But, he was hard on me because as a drill sergeant in the military that’s all he knew. Sure, I hated that as a kid. I fought his orders… to my dismay. As I grew older, I became to respect the lessons my father taught me.
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Murph, “Why The Edina and Southwest Minneapolis Local Advice Givers Podcast?”

Edina-SW Mpls Advice Givers® podcast is an entire media company, in the first place. Let me start by stating the obvious. Media companies today aren’t about serving the local community. Minneapolis or St. Paul. Their only interest (and mission) is to generate advertising revenue, and pulling national stories from the Associated Press. We, Edina-SW Mpls Advice Givers®, are here to help break that mold. It used to be that you could visit a media company’s website, or read their publication, and find stories about local entrepreneurs. Business people and leaders in the community, striving to build interesting things, solve problems and make impact. When you read these stories, you were inspired. “If he or she can do it, why can’t I?” Further, you often knew the people that were featured. Maybe it’s a parent of your kids’ friend, at the local school. Or a young entrepreneur who invented a gadget, solving a painful problem. Or a service provider, like a financial planner or local chiropractor, helping individuals, families, and retirees to live better lives. Now though, you open that publication, and it doesn’t matter which it is, only to find more ads. In the famous words of Dave Thomas, Wendy’s founder, “Where’s the beef?” And the stories that are published, aren’t even about the people in our local community, city or county. They’re from someplace we’ve never heard of. Then there is the issue of content. What has happened to the art of great storytelling? Where did the human element
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It’s moments like this That Remind You…
This Disease Is A Bitch!

Yesterday, I was golfing with a friend of mine and he asked me, “How are you doing Murph… Got any fun trips planned?” In an instant I thought about this trip I have been begging my wife to go on with me as a celebration of my 40th birthday. Very rarely do we get time alone together. Now a day’s… The only time we see each other is just before our heads hit the pillow. I look at her — she looks at me — and we say, “I’ll see you tomorrow.” Like two ships passing in the night. You know the other is there but, you’re both so focused on navigating the dark and the fog that you pass without a sound. I have been tracking flights to San Francisco. Man they are cheap. I saw one the other day for $250 per ticket round trip. I don’t fly a ton but, usually take 1–3 trips a year and I have never seen tickets this cheap. Man, I need to jump on these. So, I keep emailing her, let’s go, let’s make this happen, we deserve it, we need some alone time, etc…. Murph, I love you — you know that. I would love nothing more than to take this trip to San Francisco. I have always dreamed of being there with you, sipping wine, seeing the amazing sights and enjoying a romantic time with the guy I love more than anything.” BUT!!!! We don’t have anyone willing to take care of Shanley for more
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Catch me I’m falling…

Standing on top of a 1,000 story building — jump “I can’t eat, I can’t sleep — the thoughts of “what if” running through my head. My stomach feels like its dropping and will never stop. The worst part… I don’t even know If I’m wearing a parachute. If I am… will it open?” Walking into a realm which you’ve never been. Traveling outside your comfort zone. Pushing yourself beyond the limits you knew possible. As a young child this is an hourly occurrence. As a kid it happens daily. Becoming an adult you start to see it less and less. Then finally you’re “Older” or “Elderly” scared as hell for what tomorrow will bring. As life reveals… There is usually someone or something there to catch you when you’re falling. Sometimes you don’t know who or what — that is the most frightening thing of all. Trust, is a very complex and extremely fragile thing. You think you have it but, then it’s gone. You think you know what it is, like an Eagle flying through the sky, when in the blink of an eye it turns into a vulture swooping down for its next meal. The question trust always leads us to “Why.” Why do I feel the way I do? Why am I not willing to let go and trust they will catch me? As an entrepreneur I live in a world of endless jumps from 1,000 story buildings. You embrace, when jumping, there is no parachute. Confidence lies in an ability to
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The Climb

4:30am, sitting here, I am lost in this picture as I put myself in their shoes. On the bottom of a mountain looking up and all I see is jagged rocks, big boulders (That could drop at anytime), cracks or traps as we like to call them — (Catch your foot or leg in one and potentially break it) get caught in one… it’s a potential setback. I can feel the struggle as their legs are burning. I can hear deep fast breathing as their lungs begin to burn and doubt creeps into their mind. “I don’t know if I can make it.” each one of them is saying. I am thinking to myself, “It’s times like these when you find out what you are really made of.” Looking up the mountain after every step… it seems as if you are not even moving, it seems like the top is getting farther and farther away. Upon each new plateau you realize there is another summit. All along the way you are thinking, “Why am I doing this. There has to be an easier way.” As I shut my eyes, a new vision enters my mind. It’s a picture of me: Sitting behind this computer writing to you. Struggling to find new guests for our podcast each and every week. Pushing hard to find new projects for our development company. Innovating new ways to grow EHRConstruction.com so we can help more families make their dreams come true. Helping friends who trust in us
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Are they just words on paper… Or do they have power?

This made me think about two mothers of individuals I showcased in my “Special People Doing Special Things” section of our newsletter. I wrote about a buddy of mine and I wrote about a gal on my team. The gal Diana, on our team called me yesterday, “Tim, you won’t believe this…” she said. “What! What did I do now?” I responded. “My mom is here reading the section you wrote about me in the newsletter. She is in tears reading it and can hardly finish.” Diana said. In the background I could hear her mom say, “Let me talk to him!” She got on the other end of the line. I could hear her sniffles and her hand bump the phone as she went to wipe her eye. “Give me a second to gather myself Tim.” 2 seconds go buy and she gets on the phone. A deep breath and this is what she says, “Tim, I know we have never met but, Diana has told me so much about you these last 3 years. I want to thank you for everything you do. But, this letter…” she had to take another deep breath and pause. “This letter, these words mean so much. They are so true and so real. Diana does have a huge heart. She is loyal and dependable. Most of all she always sacrifices for others. You and I know the ruff roads she has traveled in these last 3 years. For this I thank you
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The Process Is As Important As The Result – Anxiety of the unknown…

Like a first date, you walk in, sit down and look around you… What do you see? How do you feel? What can you expect? These are all natural feelings when you’re going to meet someone new for the first time. Anxiety sets in as you have prepared, to the best of your ability but, still you don’t know what to expect. You are about to embark on the most significant journey of your life. It will symbolize your step from being a young adult to a responsible grownup. These are the feelings Brad Fisher had just before meeting us at our office. Like everyone else who is buying a home for the first time Brad had questions about the process and needed answers. Because of this, we stressed an initial one-on-one conversation which allowed Brad to walk through the process of buying a home from start to finish. Brad shares the experience of having his first buyer consultation with us: “Tim & Diana were both extremely friendly, informative, and honest right from the start. Being a first time home buyer, I didn’t know exactly what to expect with the process of buying a home, nor did I know what types of homes were realistic to find in my search area and price range. Also, during our first meeting, they supplied suggestions of lenders, home inspectors, etc… to help begin my search and answered all my questions about what to look for in these services. I walked out of my
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A Dream Come True – All You Must Do Is Believe In YOU…

“Murph, brother! It is so good to see you. Thanks for hooking up with me today!” words from my buddy Jason, that changed the course of both our lives, as we sat down for lunch one afternoon in 2006. Jason and I went way back to riding bikes and chasing girls in 6th grade. I lived in Burnsville and he lived in Apple Valley. We both went to Valley Middle school. Jason was a skater and trouble maker. I was a jock and always looking to push my boundaries. I think this was why we liked each other so much. Our friendship lasted all but one or two years as my athletics took up more and more time —  I found myself only hanging out with those whom I played sports. While Jason took a different path… But, I will never forget the times we had. Many years passed —  then I saw Jason at my 10 year high school reunion. I didn’t expect what I saw. I had heard stories about Jason and his struggles to make ends meet just out of high school. But, when I saw him at our 10 year reunion he was wearing a well manicured suite, black shoes that looked like a marine polished them, white shirt with not a single wrinkle, clean —  short — sharp hair cut (I always remembered him with long hair) and he looked lean and healthy. I couldn’t help but walk up to him as I needed to know his story. Come to
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