Don’t Hang It Up!


Dan Blanchard award-winning author, speaker and educator

Dan Blanchard award-winning author, speaker, and educator

I remember being lost in awe with the fact that I was even standing in the same room with this legend! Jim Peckham, the 1976 United States Olympic Wrestling Coach, was putting on a youth wrestling clinic in my hometown! I had been anticipating his arrival for months. But, ironically, what I remember from that day long ago was not what I thought it would be.

Some wrestler interrupted Coach Peckham right in the middle of a move that he was demonstrating. Everybody quietly held their breath. This nobody-in-the-wrestling-world asked the-best-in-the-wrestling-world if he could do this particular wrestling move a different way…

Much to Coach Peckham’s credit, he didn’t dismiss the young boy; I imagine many of his stature would have. Coach Peckham looked at the boy with curiosity and said, “Can you please show me what you are talking about?” The boy bravely got up, went to the front of the wrestling room and showed a different variation of the same wrestling move that Coach Peckham had shown.

To my surprise, Coach Peckham was thinking about this wrestling move. After what seemed like a really long time and several facial contortions, Coach Peckham spoke. “Can you show me that move again?” 

He did, and then Jim Peckham, one of the best wrestling coaches in the world, said, “I’ve never thought about doing this wrestling move that way. But, I suppose that would work.” Coach Peckham then turned toward the rest of us and said, “That’s the beauty of this sport; you never get too old to learn something new. And if the day ever comes that I think I can’t learn any more about this sport, then that is the day that I should hang it up.”

So, let’s not hang up your wrestling shoes yet, or anything else yet. We all need you to continue to learn, lead, and remember that the day we stop learning is the day we are hanging it up. So, let’s never stop learning! And let’s never hang it up!

dan blanchard award winning author, speaker and teacher   *Check out this great podcast Dan did with Marc Guberti of BREAKTHROUGH SUCCESS




*Also, check out this amazing teen Alana Andrews:






*The difference between two teens today and ten years from today will be the books they read and the people they talked to!

Dan Blanchard, Teen Leadership, The Storm





the storm









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