By Gino Blefari
Last week, my travels took me all over the Golden State—from San Francisco to Palm Springs. And this week, I’m still in California, working closely with our staff at HSF Affiliates in Irvine. In between conference calls and meetings, I had the incredible opportunity to chat with author and former Navy SEAL Mark Divine, who penned one of my favorite leadership books, Unbeatable Mind. During our conversation, Mark was incredibly friendly, even extending an invitation for me to visit his SEALFIT Training Center, which from what I’m told, is everything you’d expect from a hard-core fitness facility. Even over the phone, Mark’s can-do attitude and positive outlook fit perfectly with the resiliency and mental toughness he champions in his writing. More on his leadership philosophy later …
First, let me tell you how this all started.
A few weeks ago, I was in Tampa visiting Broker/Owners Dewey Mitchell, Allen Crumbley and their team at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Florida Properties Group. While speaking with Dewey, Allen and Mike Fields, managing director at Orion Commercial Services, LLC, which provides commercial technology support to the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices network, “Unbeatable Mind” came up in conversation. I would be quoting from the book during my presentation later that morning and I mentioned the impact Mark Divine’s ideas about leadership have had on my life.
The following day, I was having breakfast with Mike Fields and his 22-year-old son, Derek. Mike mentioned how highly I spoke of Mark Divine and Derek told me he has a connection to Commander Divine. Talk about six degrees of separation!
Fast forward to this Monday and to my phone conversation with The New York Times bestselling author. It was amazing to hear the personification of what had previously been inspiring words on a page and to dig deeper into the former Navy SEAL’s mindset for undeniable, unbeatable success, as explained by the man himself. I told Commander Divine how his breathing techniques allow me stay calm in stressful situations; how his advice for controlling fear—“feeding the courage wolf”—have helped me find inner strength when it’s needed most; how his ideas about the importance of trustworthiness provide endless motivation in my new role as CEO of HSF Affiliates.
He was both gracious and amiable, and glad to hear how his book had been so significant to my life. However, as much as “Unbeatable Mind” has influenced my own professional journey, its tenets can just as easily be applied to anyone in any field looking to accomplish goals and move forward with strength and determination. For instance, take Commander Divine’s discussion of trustworthiness and loyalty, or, what he refers to as “the glue that holds relationships and teams together.” In “Unbeatable Mind,” he lists seven qualities that trustworthy individuals display:
- They are aligned in thought, word and deed and thus display integrity in their actions.
- They follow through on all commitments.
- They are courageous and don’t shirk from responsibilities or challenging assignments.
- They don’t run or hide during a crisis but rather step up to lead and help out.
- They are competent enough to get the job done well or at least have the insight to ask the right questions!
- They are humble and don’t need all the credit.
- They are supportive of the team and delegate and trust them.
So, what’s the message? Stay committed, humble and motivated. Be a trustworthy and loyal leader and member of your team. That’s the kind of person we should all aspire to be, a person just like the one I was fortunate enough to meet this week.