Ironically, an “old” adage from author/playwright George Bernard Shaw famously declared that “youth is wasted on the young.”

Cute…..but I respectfully disagree.

While I get Shaw’s motivation, I find it hypocritical. We all made mistakes when we were young, but it helped define us in our later years. I loved my youth but am happier now, having experienced decades of the ups and downs of life. I enjoyed being 25 but am better at 55. My late father disliked this saying: I will continue the family tradition.

Marie von Ebner-Eschenbach Quote: “In youth we learn; in age we understand.”

I’ve frankly learned a lot from those younger than me. My students constantly are teaching me lessons in a variety of ways. Some of the best innovators are those younger than us who always inspire me. I respect the chances they take and the goals they achieve at such a young age.

And then you have my daughters- two different ladies who have taught me plenty. They are honest in their assessment of my clothes, my snoring, and my work. They have had a great impact on my life from the beginning…..

 

Both are in college now and recently, I asked my youngest why she was so happy at the University of Alabama.

Her reply was, “It’s mine.” Meaning that it’s her identity, one she’s proud of, and she’s made her own.

Boy, that was refreshing to hear and educational as well.

Alabama is her new identity. A place where my baby girl has discovered newfound independence, brand new friends, and limitless opportunities. She’s soaking it all in and loving every minute. A new lease on life has improved her, giving her confidence and a prideful purpose.

What a valuable lesson for us all.

It made me think in this New Year with plenty of resolutions how, at any age, we should make something in our lives “mine.” We should all find something that drives us, gives us a new start, or a new motivation that is all “mine” or, in this context, all “yours.”

10 Signs You'll Achieve Your Goals This Year | Grow With Rainy

It could be starting a new business, chasing that goal you’ve been putting off for years, whatever it is—find your “mine.” It’s liberating to create new happiness at any age, and my daughter’s response was the smartest reply I’ve heard in some time.

Her response was heartfelt as she said it without hesitation, immediately and sincerely. It made me happy for her and secure that she is perfectly adjusting to her new life —something we should all strive for.

This fall was the first time I hadn’t covered football as a sportscaster in almost two decades. I love my newfound profession as a college professor but wasn’t sure how much I would miss a career I had wanted since elementary school.

The answer is I didn’t miss it at all.

I have found my new “mine,” a job that has made me more fulfilled than I could have imagined. I am eager to improve and help my students realize they can find happiness in their respective careers if they put the work in at this point. I’m excited about new projects I’m working on, the possibilities seem endless.

How To Maintain The Willpower To Achieve Your Goals - Make Me Better

So sorry Mr Shaw, I respectfully disagree, youth isn’t wasted on the the young. When this author made this infamous statement, he would later throw gasoline on the fire by adding to his perspective on our youth: “They’re brainless and don’t know what they have; they squander every opportunity of being young, on being young.”

It’s such a general, reckless statement, nonsense, and blanket generality that’s so untrue on many levels.

I remember watching my daughters at home when they were around 6 and 3. I was in the middle of a hectic work project and asked them repeatedly if they could be quiet so Daddy could work. They didn’t listen, and the asking turned into yelling.

It got to a point where I told them both, “I’m tired of yelling,” My then three-year-old looked at me and replied, “Then why don’t you stop.”

Common sense, right? I had to turn the other way so she wouldn’t see me laughing.

Youth isn’t wasted on the young. So far this year, my youngest has inspired me to keep searching for my next “mine.”  Hopefully, this inspires you, too.

Here’s hoping your “mine” adds meaning to your life in the New Year.

A lesson not wasted on the young or the old.

Finding your “mine” is the first stop in another trip around the Naborhood. As always, thanks for stopping by.

BEST NFL STADIUMS: It’s funny how getting older changes your perspective. I used to love going to games, but frankly, these days, I enjoy watching it all from home. There are some exceptions, though. I like experiencing new stadiums. I’ve been to over half of the Major League ballparks and look forward to finishing that list, but I just completed my NFL tour.

Entering this season, I had been to every NFL stadium except the relatively new SoFi stadium, home of the Rams and Chargers in Los Angeles. It was built in 2020.

SoFi Stadium's sustainable lake highlights water reuse

With all the others in my rearview mirror, I finally crossed this one off by taking in a game back in the fall. My expectations were high, and it didn’t disappoint. It has a new-era design and feel, but what stood out was the not-so-surprising LA feel. They flashed celebrities on the JumboTron during every commercial time out and, at halftime, boasted a mini Busta Rhymes concert, but overall, in my eyes, it wasn’t the nicest stadium in the league. It barely made the top five. So, while I await my pending MLB tour in the coming years to finish off that list, here are NFL rankings of the top five stadiums in the league:

(5) LOS ANGELES/SoFi Stadium: A beautiful stadium which boasts a unique location—adjacent to the NFL Network studios and a quick 20 minute Uber drive to the LAX airport, in fact SoFi is directly in the LAX flight path. To keep the structure’s overall height below FAA flight-restricted areas, crews had to dig deep to accommodate the massive, vertical seating bowl for the 70,240 fans attending events at SoFi Stadium, the largest in the NFL.

(4) GREEN BAY/Lambeau Stadium: Kansas City and Seattle are louder, but you could, for the fan experience, the Cheesehead’s home turf is the best. The smallest market in the NFL boasts a unique fan-friendly tailgating experience, and their renovations make it a great stadium to soak in the history and watch a game. It’s amazing in my trips to Lambeau how normal the neighborhood is across the street—those home prices have soured over the years for good reason (location, location, location.)

(3) ATLANTA/Mercedes Benz Stadium: This is an impressive building, from the circular scoreboard to the rare puzzle-piece roof, which can open and close in 12 minutes. What makes this place unique are the perks. It easily has the best spread of any Press Box in the league (unbelievable options and great ice cream), but the fans enjoy discount prices at its wide variety of concessions from five-dollar cheeseburgers to 1.00 popcorn—you won’t get that kind of bargain anywhere else in the NFL.

(2) DALLAS/Jerry (Jones) World: Another example of why everything is or seems bigger in Texas. The Jumbotron is the centerpiece of an attractive stadium—how big? How about it stretches from one 20-yard line to the other 20?! It is a trendsetter in many respects as Atlanta mirrors this venue, and it’s the first stadium I saw that had luxury suites at the field level. I actually saw those working in the NHL years ago, but Dallas took the lead–an impressive place to see a football game, but if you are there for basketball, it’s hard to take your eyes off the big board; no place like it.

and a drum roll please…….Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About US Bank Stadium | NanaWall

(1) MINNESOTA/U.S. Bank Stadium: This was an easy choice. This stadium is the most attractive and full of irony. It resembles a Viking ship, but the designers claim that’s just a coincidence. The architects claim “the Bank’s” steep roofs of structures from Northern Europe are a nod to the area’s Scandinavian heritage but weren’t motivated to mirror a Viking ship. The picturesque views boast the country’s largest transparent roof and five 95-feet to 75-feet high pivoting glass doors that open to a great view of the Minneapolis downtown skyline—I highly recommend a trip!

 A GREAT READ: A nice way to begin the New Year is good advice from your children and the recommendation of a new book. I first heard about Harvard professor and noted author Arthur C. Brooks, after a speaking engagement last year when a man in the audience gave me his “From Strength to Strength,” which honed in on making the most of the second half of your life.

After seeing many people (on several flights) reading reviews and then seeing a profile on one of my favorite shows, “CBS This Morning.” I had to check out Brooks’ “Build the Life You Want.” A book he collaborated with Oprah Winfrey passes on a lot of great themes, but front and center, it focuses on the art of being happy.

Why aren’t we happy? What gets us to a place where we find greater happiness? The answer is, well, it’s not an easy one, and it doesn’t happen overnight, but the lessons I took from this book made me more self-aware to discover it all moving forward.

Amazon.com: Build the Life You Want: The Art and Science of Getting Happier (Audible Audio Edition): Oprah Winfrey, Arthur C Brooks, Oprah Winfrey, Arthur C Brooks, Penguin Audio: Audible Books & Originals

The answers are complicated but come down to choices—who you surround yourself with, what decisions you make regarding your goals, and your passion for work and life in general but you must work to find those passions. Like his previous books, Brooks prioritizes not being scared to start over at any juncture in your life in favor of the pursuit of greater happiness.

The book states: “Happiness is not a destination. Happiness is a direction.” You are never happy all the time, but you can always be happy with the right adjustments and reset goals—this book outlines a roadmap to get there–I recommend it!

NOBODY ASKED ME, BUT: I don’t pull for teams anymore; for years, I have pulled for people. People I have covered or just people I respect from afar. The Lions’ Head Coach, Dan Campbell, certainly qualifies. There isn’t a professional coach like him. The former Tight End looks like he could still play but has many layers despite his rough exterior.

He wears every emotion on his sleeve, and his authentic nature has led to a turnaround of one of the laughing stock franchises in professional sports. Before Campbell’s arrival, the Detroit Lions had “one” playoff win since the 1950’s. He won two postseason games in the past month and almost pulled off the trifecta.

Dan Campbell Doesn't Deserve Criticism for Lions' Loss to 49ers

I’m in the minority here, but I defend Gamble Campbell’s gutsy 4th down calls in the NFC Championship game versus the 49ers. It’s funny how, before this game, going for it made Campbell a folk hero nationally, but now he is lit up like a firecracker for what many consider a reckless coaching style.

This is nothing new. Campbell has been going for it all year, a quality which has endeared him to his players and keyed one of the best turnarounds in sports. It’s funny to me that if his Lions would have converted a fourth down with just over seven minutes left in the game, it would have added to his legend, but now he’s being mocked by many as too little for the big-time moment.

The same critics would have roasted former Saints coach Sean Payton back in 2010 for opening the second half of a Super Bowl vs the Colts when he attempted (and converted) an onside kick—-but it worked, so he is the hero.

My opinion hasn’t wavered on Campbell’s aggressive approach even though he came up short, and I expect him and the Lions to be back—-sometimes the risks don’t pay off, but that is the chance you take—give credit to the leader of the Lions for staying consistent–don’t change coach.

I appreciate your guts…. even when you don’t get the glory.

EXTRA POINT: It’s crazy to see how our world can change quickly. The college football landscape has been taken over by NIL and the NFL who used to stiff arm gambling at every turn is going to have its Super Bowl in….Las Vegas??! That with every other commercial from likely a gambling site- how the times are changing. By the way, give me the Niners over the Chiefs. My man Brock Purdy is the MVP, and they will win 37 to 34.

UNTIL NEXT BLOG,

Mike Nabors

@mikenabors

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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