I Nearly Died

The front of the truck

Two years ago today I collided with a tree and nearly died. I don’t remember much about the accident. But, a day hasn’t gone by that I haven’t remembered that life is frail.

I remember the touch of people standing by my bed.

Two college students built a wheel chair ramp. Friends brought food.

My wife put her life on hold for weeks. Mark, our youngest, set up the Christmas tree while I watched from a wheelchair, my neck brace pushing my chin up.

Online friends led by Jesse StonerLolly Daskal, and Becky Robinson raised $20,000 in two weeks to help with medical expenses. Individuals from all over the world cared for us.


Compassion expands our worth, both in the giving and the receiving.  People did things for me that I couldn’t do for myself. The people who cared for me told me I mattered.

We forget we matter. The great responsibility of leadership is remembering you matter. Your behaviors and choices matter to others. When you matter, what you do matters to others.


The great privilege of leadership is letting people know they matter. Everyone forgets.

It’s easy to minimize and devalue. All it takes is neglect. Weak leaders don’t have the strength to help others matter.


Let people know they matter:

  1. Speak hard truths kindly.
  2. Expect more of them than they expect of themselves.
  3. Release don’t dominate.
  4. Channel don’t stifle.
  5. Develop their strengths.
  6. Minimize and compensate for their weaknesses.
  7. Follow success with new opportunities.
  8. Show compassion.
  9. Remember progress rather than failure while pushing forward.
  10. Believe in them.

Here’s my first post after the accident: The Reason I haven’t Posted in a Week. It’s a little rambling because of medication.

What can you do today that lets someone know they matter?