LET GO OF THE HORN AND GET BACK IN THE SADDLE Lessons From My Granddad
I’m not sure about you, but during this last month, I’ve often found myself hanging on to the horn, unsure of how to ride in the sandstorm of COVID-19. I’m not an expert, but I can tell you it has been a very scary ride. Just last month, I told you that my new motto was going to be “faith over fear.” Well, easier said than done, right? As we head into May, I’m encouraging you to let go of the horn and learn how to use the stirrups. That doesn’t mean you should cast fear and common sense away. On the contrary, it means continuing to protect yourself. However, now is the time to learn how to proactively approach and deal with the “new normal.” I’m sure you’ll agree that the hard part is how the new normal changes every day. To survive this ride, you’re going to have to stand tall in the saddle, be alert, and use your balance to stay on. That means we have to start selling again and finding a way out. My plan is to P.R.O.S.P.E.C.T. Just like my granddad taught me 47 years ago on the back of the horse, it’s okay to hang on to the horn at first. It’s still an unpredictable and potentially dangerous ride. When it’s time to ride for real, however, you’re going to have to use the stirrups and let go of the horn to be a real cowboy. I’m telling you to let go of the horn, use your legs, and start prospecting and selling today . Here’s my reminder on prospecting: P ay attention to what your clients need now. R eal people like you need to have care and compassion for your clients. O utshine your competition by making phone calls every day. S elling fixes all ailments. Start selling again. P ut value as your top priority for everyone you call. E veryone needs our help. C ontact all of your clients from the last five years or longer. T ime is critical, so do it now . Lastly, I want to remind you that I was bucked off that horse more than a few times. My granddad always made me get back on. If you haven’t been already, I can promise you that you’re going to get bucked off a few times in this new normal. It’s to be expected in this kind of unprecedented circumstance. You’re not alone. Get back in the saddle and get going.
T he cover photo for this month’s newsletter is circa 1973. My granddad, David O. Tester, is the man with the cowboy hat, and I’m the little boy on the back of the black horse. I selected this photo as my “slow poetry of history” to deal with COVID-19 and these unique times we’re living in. As I was learning how to ride that horse, you can see I am hanging on to the horn of the saddle — very tightly, I might add. My granddad used to say, “Hang on to that horn. It’s not to honk.” Later on, as I became a more experienced rider and cowboy, I discovered that the horn was really for emergencies only. The real secret of staying on a horse was balance in the saddle and how my legs and feet worked together in the stirrups. As I became a better rider and grew more accustomed to that black mare, I very seldom grabbed the horn.
Thank you, Granddad, for convincing me and others to let go of the horn and cowboy up.
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