GrowBIG Playbook: Inspiration Time!

What’s On My Mind

I’m really proud of the women in my life.

Becky and I will be married 30 years this August 1st.

Hard to believe.

I remember moving from Fort Wayne to Atlanta the week after our wedding.

Neither of us had a job.

But we had a month’s rent paid, $426 in an envelope and dreams of living the life we wanted.

We knew we’d find a way.

And we have.

Becky now helps people every day through equine therapy with her charity, Reins Of Hope.

Kids with disabilities. Breast cancer survivors.

Both groups have headwinds.

Becky helps them achieve more than they ever thought possible.

Now our two daughters are charting their own path.

Gabby’s running Duke’s puppy cognition research lab, helping figure out what early-stage experiences correlate to successful service dog training.

Josie’s at Georgia State, figuring out where her passion lies, but there’s no doubt it’ll be helping others in a unique way.

Both Gabby and Josie have faced headwinds. Tons of them.

And of course, there’s my mom. Let me tell you, she deserves her own article with the headwinds she’s faced. (Happy Mother’s Day, Mom!)

Here’s my point.

I’m surrounded by strong women.

Women face headwinds men don’t.

I’ll never forget the first time I saw it first hand.

It was the summer of 1995 at our kitchen table in Atlanta.

A man selling teacher’s retirement savings plans visited Becky to talk her through the process.

As someone studying for the actuarial exams at the time, I was excited to meet him and support Becky with her decisions.

But the meeting was horrible.

He only looked at me.

The entire time.


For 45 minutes, he just kept looking at me, like Becky didn’t exist.

It was her retirement!

It was so weird I couldn’t comprehend it.

I even mentioned what he was doing in the meeting, but he didn’t change.

We were both soooo turned off by that guy.

That was the first time I remember personally experiencing headwinds others face that I don’t.

It really stuck with me. I still remember every detail of that meeting. The room. Where each of us sat. His tone.

Those details lead me to this week’s insights for you.

Many groups face headwinds others don’t.

So when I meet someone who blazed a trail, faced extreme headwinds, persevered, and accomplished more than the world set her up to do, I’m inspired.

That inspiration is the gift I have for you today.

This inspiration’s name?

Linda Klein.

Linda is one of the most inspiring and wonderful people I’ve ever met.

She’s a top lawyer. top advisor, and top human being.

  • She’s been “the first woman to do ____” more time than I can list.
    (Her online bio is so long, it might need its own server!)
    Champion for battered women.
    Chair of her firm.
    Countless Board memberships.
  • She was the first female President of the State Bar of Georgia.
  • She did such a great job, she was elected President of the entire American Bar Association (ABA), the largest professional organization in the world.

All this while practicing law at the highest levels.


Talk about success despite headwinds.

I can’t imagine the extra work Linda had to put in relative to her peers.

I can’t imagine the bias she felt and sometimes didn’t feel, but it was there.

I can’t imagine the perseverance Linda mustered as she got up every day, and went back at it, despite the headwinds.

But there’s one thing we don’t have to imagine.

Linda’s views on relationship development.


She’s sharing them with us.

Linda and I recorded what might be my favorite episodes of the 300+ I’ve recorded, and they just dropped this week.

HERE is Linda on developing strong relationships.

HERE is Linda on solving client problems in a way that’s a win for all.

HERE is Linda on her favorite GrowBIG framework, detailing how she uses it.

HERE is Linda sharing a story of her own perseverance in developing a client relationship.

And, my personal favorite, HERE is Linda sharing her deepest advice to her younger self.

I was emotionally moved at the end of that last episode.

(But don’t skip right to it–these are best listened to or watched in order.)

At that moment, as I felt the emotion…

I was thinking of Becky and the headwinds she’s faced as a woman.

I was thinking of Gabby and Josie and the headwinds they’ll face as they grow.

I thought of Linda’s past, when it was much tougher than it is now.

As I was thinking, I was thankful.

Thankful for the pioneers before us.

People like Linda.

People who have made it easier for others—easier for my two daughters to live the life they want.

And make the impact they want to have.

I’ll close with this.

There’s something deeply cool about this community, the people connected to Bunnell Idea Group.

Yeah, we talk a lot about growing businesses, relationships and careers.

That’s BIG’s promise in the marketplace.

But this community is much deeper than that.

It’s about positive growth.

Making an impact.


Creating a future where everyone is better off.

What we all do is hard work and worth it.

What’s something you’re passionate about changing?

What’s the next right action you can take to change it?

Let’s learn from Linda.

Let’s get inspired.

Let’s go blaze some trails.


ps. Feel free to forward this to the strong women in your life…

And if you’re in the USA, happy Mother’s Day!

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