Daily Attitude Email 08 29 17

If you want to change the world, measure a person by the size of their heart, not the size of their flippers.

This was the third lesson offered by William McRaven as he made a commencement speech based on his time as a Navy SEAL.

We all make assumptions and judgments about others as we go about our day. It is a necessary part of interacting in so many ways at the pace at which we move today.

McRaven has an important point to make about those assumptions and those judgments we make: don’t judge a book by its cover.

I know I often make these assumptions only to be proven wrong in the end.

But we must learn a new way of doing things – judging others by their hearts.

This is harder, to be sure, but I think it is worth it in the end.

Who in your life do you need to spend time looking at their heart instead of their flippers?

Is there a situation or a group of people who deserve a closer look?

How could you build more empathy for others into your daily interactions?

Make it a great day.


Here is the text from this section of the speech:

Over a few weeks of difficult training my SEAL class which started with 150 men was down to just 35. There were now six boat crews of seven men each.

I was in the boat with the tall guys, but the best boat crew we had was made up of the little guys — the munchkin crew we called them — no one was over about 5-foot five.

The munchkin boat crew had one American Indian, one African American, one Polish America, one Greek American, one Italian American, and two tough kids from the mid-west.

They out paddled, out-ran, and out swam all the other boat crews.

The big men in the other boat crews would always make good natured fun of the tiny little flippers the munchkins put on their tiny little feet prior to every swim.

But somehow these little guys, from every corner of the Nation and the world, always had the last laugh — swimming faster than everyone and reaching the shore long before the rest of us.

SEAL training was a great equalizer. Nothing mattered but your will to succeed. Not your color, not your ethnic background, not your education and not your social status.

If you want to change the world, measure a person by the size of their heart, not the size of their flippers. ​

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