The Blog of Jake Kelfer
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Earlier this week I had the privilege to attend a Q&A with Magic Johnson at an Oracle NetSuite networking event. My good friends Easton and Kendall invited me as Kendall was the one interviewing Magic so shoutout to them!
For those of you that don't know, my family and I are die-hard Lakers fans. Magic Johnson is and always has been my favorite basketball player. His jersey was the very first jersey I bought for my bar mitzvah back when I was 13. I wore the number 32 my entire childhood to honor both him and Sandy Koufax as I mostly played basketball and baseball. To say I was excited to learn from him was quite the understatement.
Everyone has that one person or group of people that they really look up to and Magic is that person for me, so when it came time for audience Q&A, I knew I had to step up and ask him a question. I could've asked about the Lakers (and I really wanted to), but I focused on something more powerful - the pursuit of life. I mean, he did go from NBA Champion to making billion dollar deals.
Here's what I asked him...
"You wanted to be the best in basketball and now you want to be the best in business. How do you handle the pursuit of greatness and the desire to be the best with the process of living and being in the moment?"
Talk about a ball buster. The room went quiet while Magic took a second to think about it.
For the next 5 minutes, Magic spoke on eloquently talking about how he absolutely loves living. He talked about life growing up with 9 brothers and sisters. He talked about how he loves waking up at 4am in the morning to get to work. He talked about how he loves taking the month of August off to spend time with his wife and family in Europe. He finished by saying he loves life and that he is so grateful.
Hearing him talk about life this way made me think about my viewpoint as well as others that I speak with. Sometimes we get so caught up in what we think we should be doing or who we think we should become or what metric we are trying to hit, that we ignore what's right in front of us. Wherever you're reading this, think about all the great things in your life. Think about all that you are accomplishing. Appreciate it, and then keep going!
Magic is Magic, yes, but he wasn't always that way. He's a guy from Lansing, Michigan who turned himself into one of the greatest basketball players and now one of the most influential people in sports and business.
I am on a mission to inspire people to achieve their own definition of success and reach the highest level of personal happiness.