Saturday, April 25, 2015

Bernie Parent: I don't have a clue

Hall of Fame goalie Bernie Parent.
Hall of Fame goalie Bernie Parent.

I don't have a clue about most of the things that are happening in my life. I just don't. You may spend time planning where you want to be and what you want to do, but you really have no clue how that plan is going to pan out.

Ask a lot of successful people. They had a purpose, a vision, but they had no clue how they were going to get there. For example, when I was younger, my vision was to play in the National Hockey League, but I had absolutely no clue how to get there. It was shown to me day in and day out. People get frustrated because there's never a direct line to what you want to achieve. It's never that easy. To get to St. Louis, you have to pass through Pittsburgh. You keep your purpose in reach, but you have no idea what the ride will be like.

Things happen. People come into your life. And if you wake up without a clue as to how you're going to reach your purpose, stay away from your negative thoughts. Be ready for the positive things that life will bring you today. If you pay attention to the things happening around you in your life, you will be shown the way.

When I would step on the ice for every game, they sang the National Anthem, and my vision was winning. It could be 5-2, we might lose, we might win, might be a tie, might be a fight, might be a penalty, etc. And I didn't have a clue what was going to happen. The same scenario can be applied to everyday life.

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When I leave Cherry Hill, N.J., I'm heading back down to the shore. The shore is my destination. I plan the route I'm going to take, but I don't have a clue how it's going to work out. There could be an accident, there could be traffic, I could be delayed, all sorts of things. You know where you want to go, but there could be a whole bunch of deviations and detours that were unexpected for multiple different reasons. But the detour could lead you to unique situations, so enjoy the ride.

Setbacks can be good. What about when I got traded from the Flyers to Toronto? I had no clue how this situation would pan out for me. But it was the best thing that ever happened to me. I got to spend two great years with my mentor, Jacques Plante, learning everything I had to learn about goaltending before I went back to Philadelphia. I made the best of that situation, and it ultimately got me closer to my purpose.

"I don't have a clue," is a cousin to risk and fear. You don't know how this decision you're about to make will affect your life, but you take the risk anyway and make the best of every situation and see where it leads you. You face that fear of the unknown. But guess what? If you let your fear paralyze you and remove you from taking risks, you won't get any closer to your purpose.

The people who play it safe in life are often unhappy with how their lives have turned out.

I was talking to a fan at the game the other day, and she was talking about buying a home in Florida ... but she was hesitant. She was giving every excuse and reason not to go through with it. I told her, "If that's the way you feel, then don't get it." But I told her to reprogram her thoughts, think of that beautiful house in Florida, the beautiful weather, and if you keep that positive attitude, everything will work out. She has no idea how this will pan out, but her vision will get her there one way or another if she stays positive. All it takes is one step.

You may not have a clue, but pay attention to your vision, because it will be shown to you.

For Philly.com
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