Today’s we are joined by Jeff Steinberg, a keynote speaker, humorist, singer, and author. Jeff’s message is this: the least likely person can accomplish the most extraordinary things in the most unusual way. Jeff has what many people consider a handicap, as he was born without arms and compromised legs.
Despite that, he refuses to quit. Jeff has overcome a lot, and today he’s here to share his story and also talk about loving who you are and seeing yourself as a masterpiece. He also discusses how to overcome challenges, the importance of focusing on your strengths, and the most important questions you can ask yourself.
On this episode of the Live. Love. Engage. podcast:
- Jeff shares how he was a “thalidomide baby” and what that means.
- Why you have to face a circumstance before you can overcome it.
- How Jeff learned to be flexible and adaptable.
- How Jeff came to speak in schools, prisons, and more.
- Why when Jeff sees a challenge, he says “watch me”.
- Why it’s important to ask yourself the right questions.
- The importance of knowing your skills and your gifts.
- The things Jeff will never be able to do and how it allows him to focus on what he can.
- Why Jeff believes he is here and what his purpose is.
- Leaving Good Shepherd and the impact it has had on Jeff’s life.
- What Jeff wants his legacy to be and why it’s important to reflect upon this.
- The words Jeff wants written on his tombstone and why.
- The way Jeff handles disappointments and deals with them.
- Why Jeff is always looking for the next big thing.
Connect with Jeff
Jeff’s Website: http://www.jeffsteinberg.net/
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[00:00:02] I am Gloria Grace Rand, founder of the Love Method and author of the number one Amazon best seller, Live Love Engage How to Stop Doubting Yourself and start being yourself.
[00:00:15] In this podcast, we share practical advice from a spiritual perspective on how to live fully, love deeply and engage authentically so you can create a life and business with more impact, influence and income.
[00:00:33] Welcome to Live, Love, Engage.
[00:00:37] Namaste and welcome to Live, Love, Engage, I am Gloria Grace Rand, and we’re going to be talking today with my very special guest about really about overcoming covid actually, and a whole bunch of things. But but really, how how are we how are we surviving in this in this age? And I want to welcome Jeff Steinberg to live, love, engage. So welcome, Jeff.
[00:01:10] Finally, we get a chance to do this.
[00:01:13] Yes. Yes. We’ve had a couple of false starts before we finally connected that. But we did. And it’s funny, we actually both live in the same general vicinity and we’re both in the Orlando area. And I’ve just met met you earlier this year through through a networking event, I think that’s hosted by someone who even lives in California. Maybe I’m not sure, but but it was wonderful to be able to connect. And let me tell you, especially for those of you listening, let me tell you a little bit about this extraordinary gentleman. He is a keynote speaker, humorist, singer and author with a very special message. The least likely person can accomplish the most extraordinary things in a most unusual way. You are a masterpiece in progress. And he was born with what most folks would actually call handicaps. So he has no arms and badly compromised legs. And despite that, Jeff Steinberg refused to quit. And he is living proof that the difficult we do right away, the impossible takes a little longer.
[00:02:21] I like that quote. Yeah, that’s a team. Or your father told you. Wow. Well, words of wisdom. I like that. So let’s let’s jump in, because, you know, he you have overcome certainly a lot and certainly more than many of us deal with on a daily basis. So share a little bit, if you would, about your story and how you took something that would maybe send other people into a tailspin and just, you know, permanent depression. You wouldn’t have been able to do remarkable things in your life.
[00:03:03] Well, Gloria, I.
[00:03:06] I’m a thalidomide baby, and many of your people in the audience know what it is, but it was a drug that was introduced into the United States in nineteen forty eight in VA England and then went up into Canada, stayed mostly in the northeast of the United States from nineteen forty eight to nineteen fifty three. The purpose of thalidomide was to help women, pregnant women who were having trouble keeping their pregnancy, spotting nausea, anything that would might cause a miscarriage or might make them sick or sex like that. Because what thalidomide did was it boosted the mother’s immune system and it did that and much more. Well, they didn’t know in nineteen fifty one was that thalidomide also causes multiple birth defects, limb deficiencies, missing limbs, limb deformities, some thalidomide babies, they have no arms and their legs have missing bone. So their legs basically flop around because they have nothing to stand on even though the leg is there. Yeah, things like that. In my case, I was born with no arms. I have a little about a two to three inch on my right side and I wear an artificial arm one and then nothing on my left shoulder I have.
[00:04:47] Both of my legs were scissored criss-Cross remember in the old Westerns where you could see the Indians sitting well with their legs criss crossed over each other? That’s kind of the way I was. And when I was born, my mother didn’t know about me right away. In fact, my grandmother was the first person to see me and she called my dad, who was then a letter carrier for the U.S. Postal Service. In the Philadelphia area, and when she finally got a hold of him, all she could say was, come quick, it’s the baby, he’s not right. My father came and immediately instructed the doctors that under no circumstances were they to tell him anything until they knew for sure or until he gave word because the doctors didn’t think I was going to live. So if I was going to die, then there was no point in my mother teaching her horse to that wagon, so to speak. Yeah. And I think he did her a disservice, really, because, you know. You don’t overcome you don’t rise above anything or overcome any circumstance unless you first are willing to face that circumstance. Exactly. And deal with it. And so my mother did not know about my disability until I was almost 17 months old. Oh, my goodness. You can keep it a secret in the hospital for a long time, waiting for tests or waiting for results of tests. There have complications and things turn into weeks and weeks and months and before long.
[00:06:37] My mother started to wonder if whatever it is that they were telling her was so bad.
[00:06:44] That maybe it would be better if it went away, if it died.
[00:06:52] My grandmother came into the kitchen one night. Against my father’s wishes one day, rather, against my father’s wishes, he had told her specifically, do not tell your daughter, and she sat down at the kitchen table. Mom was over at the counter across the room, dicing something for dinner.
[00:07:16] And my grandmother said in her broken Lithuanian accent, Wutty. Easily. My mom set the knife down on the counter.
[00:07:31] She leaned against it, didn’t even turn around. She said, Mom, why won’t they let me see him?
[00:07:37] Is he ugly?
[00:07:40] And I think she thought that maybe I was facially deformed, retarded, facially deformed or whatever.
[00:07:50] And my grandmother stood up, walked over to her. Put her arm around her and said, no, you. He’s not ugly.
[00:08:01] He’s beautiful. He has a unique Yakup, a Irish face. Jewish face. Yeah.
[00:08:11] I was almost two years old, I first of all, I would not have wanted to be there that night that I knew that was not going to be a fact for anybody. No, definitely not.
[00:08:29] I was almost two years old when my mom. And my older sister, Linda, and my grandmother and my dad. And the new baby, which was Harriet, I was shovel, rather, because she was 17 months younger than my mom came to see me and my mom picked me up.
[00:08:53] And she held me she paced the floor with me in your arms, back and forth.
[00:09:01] Back and forth. Back and forth.
[00:09:06] And then turned and placed me back where she found me, swung around, stood as tall as her four foot eight frame of her victim, my father, to take me home.
[00:09:18] I’m ready to leave now.
[00:09:23] It would be many years later and many years later before my mom and I would come face to face on the SO.
[00:09:31] She would look me in the eye and she would tell me, Jeffrey. I did not you. I did not raise you, I didn’t even know how to.
[00:09:49] That would make your day. Yeah.
[00:09:54] To make a long story short, because it’s like 60 years I.
[00:10:03] From the time I was two and a half years old until I was eight years old, I was in and out of Shriners Hospital in Philadelphia. There are 19 Shriners hospitals for kids like me and three for children with severe burns, yet not one parent of any child that walks through their doors every night.
[00:10:24] Yeah, they operated on my legs to straighten them.
[00:10:28] They straighten my right leg. Discovered there was no joining me. They fused it back into a valuable tissue. And I was and I’ll always be four feet, six inches tall. Michael George is going to have to I learned to do all kinds of things with my feet.
[00:10:50] I learned to write with my feet. I used to set my big toe when you did that, Gloria.
[00:10:57] No, I can’t I can’t read. I used to think maybe I told them I probably beat myself with my feet. Did you do that?
[00:11:07] No, I don’t think so, because the earmuffs I don’t I’m not going to try today, but yeah, that’s about as far as I can go.
[00:11:20] Oh, you’re pretty good at what you’re feeling. You’re the. When I was about twenty five to thirty five plus operations, they filled me with my very first artificial arm, which back then was nothing more than a stem socket with a screen attached that was made to stay level so that I could feed myself I. I went to school from Schreiner’s when I was eight years old, I got to go home, I think that’s the one thing I wanted more than anything in the world. I wanted to be a brother.
[00:11:58] I wanted to be a son. I wanted to be a grandson. I want to be the kid in the neighborhood who got absolutely other kids.
[00:12:05] Yeah, but it got to be too difficult for my mom and dad to take care of me and three girls.
[00:12:14] Yeah, it was the girls that were the problem is always the girl.
[00:12:21] Yeah. Now I’ve got a daughter so I can relate to my mom.
[00:12:26] Why do I go with clothes. They haven’t touched my dad. Know why the blue dress there I met last year.
[00:12:40] We really you know anyway. But I digress.
[00:12:47] After nine months, I was moved to a foster home where I lived for about. Eight weeks.
[00:12:58] And then and they had a daughter that had cerebral palsy. And then I was moved again, my father and mother picked me up and they drove me sixty three miles away to a home for kids with disabilities and all people called Good Shepherd.
[00:13:16] And from there. I went to public school, I graduated from public high school, I learned to drive a car nice and I went from there to go to college in the area.
[00:13:37] I participated in all kinds of talent shows. I was the class clown my first day in high school in my in my math class geometry class. I got to leave early, like late if necessary. But as I was getting ready to leave and of course the teacher was telling the class, as I was walking out, I said to the teacher in front of the whole class, the is lawyer, don’t think this hasn’t been fun because it hasn’t.
[00:14:10] And that set the pace for a relationship with him. I spent many, many years because he left and he saw the humor in it and realized that we were going to be really good friends. And he gives me amazing years later when I would go back to my high school to speak to the kids.
[00:14:33] He would invite me to come into his class. He always had an empty seat right at the door. And every class, unless his class was overflowing right at it, always remained empty. You always put it past the first day. That seat belongs to Jeff Stackers. Oh, and he would tell the story of me and my school, and then I would come in and talk to the kids. I started a singing group in college. We were we were a trio, and the five of us in the group obviously was not our strong suit.
[00:15:18] I was going to say that sounds more like a quintet.
[00:15:22] We actually were a trio because there were only three of less than Gogia and they don’t count anything.
[00:15:32] The band musicians take exception to it.
[00:15:36] I play as well as so you know, that reminds me of the old lines in the Oak Ridge Boys some five years ago. This is very much to play rhythm guitar banging Jesus. Everybody wants to be the lead singer.
[00:15:51] What can I say? Back to my story, I. Appeared, I met a man in October, seventy two. He was a well-known gospel singer, Melanie with Doug. He was about six six oh, my.
[00:16:13] He weighed about four hundred and twenty nine pounds. That’s a read about.
[00:16:20] And he was appearing regularly on a TV show called The Old Time Gospel Hour with Dr. Jerry Falwell at Thomas Road Baptist Church in Lynchburg, Virginia. And on October 29, 1972, I appeared on the Time Gospel. Doug and I sang to get through it all by the incomparable Andre Crouch.
[00:16:45] He did it as a duet and that launched a career from 1990 around 1979. I went solo in 1985, I met Zig-Zag and a multilevel marketing convention in Charlotte, North Carolina. And he said, you have a message that goes beyond the walls of the church because you have something that can inspire people. By that time I was starting to figure out that being fearfully and wonderfully made, which is what I was told when I was 11 years old, is more than just something to quote from that. It was an attitude that people said to me that I could be a love for God to where I could be a masterpiece for others to see. And so can you. Hence, I started down a different road. Right. Still singing and speaking in churches. Well, also adding to that.
[00:18:01] To that journey and I started speaking for prevention, the words banquets, fund raisers, school assemblies, those are fun.
[00:18:11] Yeah, because you get to be on the side of a student and at odds with the principal. Yeah, that’s true. All kinds of stories and.
[00:18:24] I would simply speak in prisons and fundraisers and all kinds of things like.
[00:18:35] So. That’s my story, I told my mom one day that I was getting married. My mom said, don’t do that.
[00:18:42] It wouldn’t be fair to whoever marries you to have to take care of you and themselves that I told them that my wife is expecting our first child. And she said, don’t do that either, she said, because she’d have to take care of you. And.
[00:18:59] And that little baby boy was born very normal. Whatever it is, I believe the word normal is a euphemism for. I agree. And I don’t know about you and I don’t know about your audience, but I. I don’t want to be rude. I want to be extraordinary.
[00:19:24] Absolutely. And so that little boy.
[00:19:32] He’s forty three years old now, is a nurse practitioner. He has two children of his own. A boy and a girl boy is 13 and 21 when his son was born, I said. My fondest wish for you is that all of your children should. Become as you were kind of like the ultimate breath, of course.
[00:19:57] Yes, I know. Yes, but my mother used to say that that will wash back on you. Yeah, but he’s a good kid.
[00:20:06] And and and I have just celebrated October 20. My 48 year old been the speaker is a singer as a motivational.
[00:20:23] Well, congratulations, that is quite an accomplishment and, yeah, one to be really proud of, and you are extraordinary and I appreciate you sharing the story. I know we wanted to talk about Kobe, but I would like to just ask you really what? Was it just something always in you that you felt that you just weren’t going to let the situation stop you? Because, I mean, certainly, you know, your mom got love or she didn’t really support you. It sounded like, you know, especially early on. And yet there was something in you that seems to be that just wouldn’t quit.
[00:21:07] So I remember the Broadway song. I think it was in Porgy and Bess. I don’t remember anything you can do. I can do better. Yes, you sing better than you. Well, I was one of those kids who if I saw a challenge and somebody said, you can’t do that. You don’t have any arms. I just looked at it and say, let me watch me, because the truth is I do things from taking watches apart and putting them back together again, and sometimes they actually work well. You know, if if something broke down, I would try to figure it out, you know? I was always the guy, you know, I could use my feet for some things, I could use my mouth for some things I write with a pen in my mouth. I use a stylus. I even drive a car. Somebody asked me once, they said, how do you drive? I said, fast, but I can’t use my right foot to drive for the price of gas, for the acceleration and the braking. So I use my left foot and I have an extended left foot gas pedal, which because I’m short. By the way, I was in concert one time and I said to the audience, I said, it’s like being short and there’s one lady. It was in the south where they just tease their hair. They make it, man. She you know, I mean, she didn’t have hairspray either. She would explode. She raised her hand and she said, Young man, young man. And I looked at her and I said, yes, ma’am. She said, you’re not sure. Nor vertically challenged.
[00:23:04] I looked at the audience back and forth and I said, Man.
[00:23:09] I said, you’re mentally challenged. Bored. We live in a society that doesn’t want to admit the truth. I mean, we all like who we are. We don’t like what we have to offer. So back to driving your car. I use I use a stick in my mouth and. You know, I used the left foot gas pedal and a brake extension pedal because I’m sure and then I have a. They used to call them suicide notes. Doctors use them all the time. That way you could turn the wheel without taking your hand off. OK, bastard faster became dangerous because people would change you quickly. And then they took the vehicle. But this has a home like a dog in there. And I’d be able to go round and round to the car because it’s because of a spinner, you know, that sort of thing.
[00:24:13] My story of learning to drive is pretty funny.
[00:24:17] I mean, you know, you know, you’re in trouble with a police officer who’s going to take you for your driver’s test, counts the rules to make sure they’re for.
[00:24:30] Before you get in the car and stuff like that, you know, it’s.
[00:24:38] I’ve done all the things that people told me I couldn’t and shouldn’t do.
[00:24:44] But that’s the nature of who I want my. Everyone and part of it was because I didn’t want to be left out of it.
[00:24:53] Ok, that makes sense. Yeah, absolutely.
[00:24:58] Some people with sandals. Some people walk on high heels.
[00:25:04] Some people walk in. Leather shoes. Some people walk those wheels, some people you off with crutches. I’m not defined by the things I wear, right? And if you allow your life to be defined by the things you need in order for you to be functioning, then you’ve missed the point. Yeah.
[00:25:33] One of the things that I talk to audiences about is if you’re not getting to where you need to be. Maybe it’s because you’re getting old and you’re getting all the wrong answers in your opinion. Maybe it’s because you’re asking tough questions to see.
[00:25:55] Who am I?
[00:25:57] Well, everybody’s got a story to tell, but most of us don’t like who we are. I love the way I looked in the mirror and I see a masterpiece. I see possibilities. I see OK, what kind of accomplishment can we make today?
[00:26:17] That everybody else would say, no way, he can’t. Yeah, it’s just not possible. Second question. What are my talents and my gifts and what are my limitations? It’s obvious now you have to acknowledge the one. In order to grant the U.S. we all have abilities and everybody loves to talk about our abilities, but we also all have limitations and disabilities.
[00:26:55] Somebody said to me on the news, they said there isn’t anything a person can do. Well, I beg to differ. Just go to the top floor of any downtown Orlando building, open the windows, step out of the way, jump off flaperons as fast as you can, and you will find a limitation. You can never be a.
[00:27:19] That’s true. Absolutely.
[00:27:21] You see, we all have limitations. So let me be very clear. My limitations are the things I can do.
[00:27:32] I will never be able to give myself a bath. I will never be able to. So basketball, even though I get called buckshot all the time, I there are things I cannot do, right?
[00:27:50] But that allows me to focus on the things I, I do graphics design, I do video editing. I am a singer.
[00:28:01] I’m told that Neil Diamond sounds like me. I met him once. I told him, I said, people tell me I sound like you. Has anybody ever told you you sound like me?
[00:28:13] What did he say?
[00:28:14] I was really big. And he looked down at me and he said, no, not that I can recall. And I’m thinking, get a life, Neil one.
[00:28:25] I am I’m a husband, father and grandfather, an incredibly talented, very, very cute sleep.
[00:28:36] And if you don’t believe me, just ask me to tell you again. Here’s the. We all have things we do and we also have things we can’t, right? Don’t worry about what you can. Quit focusing on the handicap and start shooting.
[00:29:00] Yeah, yeah. Absolutely.
[00:29:02] Yeah, because you can learn how to overcome some things and maybe you can learn to do some of the things you can’t do and then whatever. You can’t if it’s just impossible, like you said, jump off a building, you’re not going be able to fly by flapping your arms. However, that doesn’t mean that you couldn’t come up with some other way of being able to do it when you want.
[00:29:25] Yeah, I met a young man, by the way, I drive to. Yes. You’re your driver has no eyes. I had a guy got in my car, looked at me, and we were like that.
[00:29:41] I look back and forth and I said.
[00:29:44] Well, I said without the hook, and that would really hurt my mom would not be happy. This is going to take her a little. Yeah.
[00:29:57] So here’s the point.
[00:30:00] I had a young man that I met who was 19 years old. I picked him up late at night to take him home from work. I knew the minute he got in the car. If there was something special about this young man. We got to talking a little bit and.
[00:30:21] He said, My boss usually takes me home from work, but she couldn’t do that, and so we chatted a little bit and in the silence he said.
[00:30:34] I think I can tell you. Because of who you are and what you look like. And because I think you’d understand. He said, I have autism.
[00:30:50] And we got to talking and I said, well, what do you want to do with your life? He said, I want to be.
[00:30:59] A pilot.
[00:31:02] And he said, when I retire or when I’m through Pylea, I want to open a retreat center. The burned out pilots, the airline pilots, military pilots, people who need a place to just kind of decompress. Yeah, well, when he told me he wanted to be a pilot, I said, do you think the FAA will allow you to be a pilot because of your autism?
[00:31:27] He said, I think every case ought to be judged on its own.
[00:31:34] This is a 19 year old kid with autism.
[00:31:39] Very high functioning. Yeah, but still, he inspired me because. He had a vision of what he what he could do, this and that special. You know, he knew why he was there. And that’s the third question you need. Ask yourself, why am I here? I’m here to make you laugh. I’m here to inspire you. I’m here to tell you that no matter how bad things look in the. You can look in the mirror and see estimates. And you don’t have to see a convict, you don’t have to see a CEO, you don’t have to see somebody facing a struggle and the man with Hertz and or even disability. Right.
[00:32:39] Why, you know, Mark Twain said the two most important days in a man’s life is first, the day his fourth, and then the day he finds out why.
[00:32:55] I love that quote. You see, that’s the thing. I know why I’m here. That young man at 19 knows why he’s here and in the midst of all of the frustrations it’s going on today, covid and all of that.
[00:33:14] Right. We need to look in the mirror. We were in our window for our FaceTime, log on and see ourselves and see.
[00:33:26] A masterpiece and see opportunities.
[00:33:32] Ok, I’ve had to reinvent myself, it’s more difficult to get to stages and stand in front of audiences because the whole entertainment slash motivational speakers industry has been set on its ear.
[00:33:48] Yeah, absolutely. So what do I do? I get invited by people like you, wonderful people who say I have an audience of people that need to be inspired. How am I going to make money from that? I don’t know. Send me an email. Took me to speak online for your group. There you go. And I’ll tell you what I tell everybody.
[00:34:12] I’m not cheap, but I’m easy getting that.
[00:34:20] We’re living in a time that’s scary. People are afraid.
[00:34:26] Yeah, absolutely. And they don’t know whether to go out or not to do it, whether to breathe or not to breathe, you know.
[00:34:36] I think we need to remember. And I hate to sound like a preacher, but I am a preacher at heart. God makes no mistakes. Absolutely. Give us. Is fearfully and wonderfully made, and we may have to take a detour or two or three.
[00:35:05] And if you can’t walk the distance, get a power chair that’s right in a scooter. Do I know the driver? Yeah, we’re going to get it over drive. Yeah. You know, we’re better than we’re just call me.
[00:35:25] The fourth thing I tell people to ask. What are my limits and my boundaries? Now, let me be very, very clear. Think the president once said that, right? Very clear. I stated earlier that my limitations are the things I. Cannot you, right? My limits are the things I will not do no good, I will not sacrifice my integrity for a dollar, I will not give up my morality. For anything. For any kind of promotion.
[00:36:16] It’s not worth it when you look in the mirror and and and I hear that all the time, well, nobody will know.
[00:36:26] Yeah, absolutely gotten them. Mm hmm.
[00:36:30] And that little voice in your head, that conscience that says you did wrong, you know?
[00:36:39] Yeah, the day that I left Good Shepherd was the hardest day of my life.
[00:36:45] And I had told everybody from the day I walked into that place, I was 11 years old. It was Halloween day nineteen sixty one nineteen sixty. I’m not staying in this place, I’m going to leave. Yada, yada, yada, yada.
[00:37:02] My graduation was front page news. A junkyard donated a car for me that they had refixed and they even outfitted it with. So it was in all the papers that I graduate and it was in all the papers that I that Lewis Cashola had given me this car and it showed a picture of me behind the wheel.
[00:37:33] The hardest day. Was that day that I finally left Good Shepherd and I could have stayed there. Gloria, I was placed there as a ward of the state of Pennsylvania. Oh, OK. And I could stay there. And because Good Shepherd, under its policy, could not ask me to leave, OK? I could have spent the rest of my life there even without regards to financial ability. That’s part of their misery.
[00:38:06] Yeah, that’s part of their mission. But under the state, under the word, under the terms of the placement. I could leave either when I turned 18 or when I graduated from high school, which ever happens first or last, whichever happened last week, or I could choose to stay.
[00:38:34] I got accepted to go to to United Western College in Allentown, Pennsylvania. I called my mom and dad told them I was leaving Good Shepherd because I was going to move in with this couple that had they were the ones who taught me. That I fearfully and wonderfully made with the Christian couple that kind of had become surrogate mom and dad to me because my relationship with my mom and dad went from the very beginning, it was once a week.
[00:39:08] Just slowly, once every couple of months to slowly two, maybe three times, you know, even though they live sixty three miles away. So I called my mom and dad on Monday, told them I was going to leave Good Shepherd. I was going to move in with the Snyders. And they came down from Philadelphia that it was this easy, I had done that. And they said, Jeffrey. If you do this, you’re on your own. If you do this, we cannot will not take care of you if something goes wrong. Right. They said, Jeffrey, if you change your mind. Call us before Saturday, by Saturday, and we’ll come to graduation, which is Sunday, right? Otherwise, we will not be there. And I wrestled with this Wednesday night, Thursday night. Friday night, I remember Saturday night laying in my bed, looking up at the ceiling. I didn’t see every story, I hear any voice in my head.
[00:40:23] There was no one. Yeah. I just said, guy. If you’re listening. You’ve always been there. My mom and dad have yeah. I think I’m going to stick with you.
[00:40:47] That’s when I heard in my head, not out loud voice, it said, you stick with me, Jeff, and we will go places. We will do things. This is. So I got to graduation. It was a great deal, no calling it the old college. And as I’m getting ready to enter the auditorium from one end of the hall, I see a door opening from the other end of the hall and I see this little girl starting to walk in my direction. For some reason. I just looked at her.
[00:41:26] She looked familiar, but against the light, and she was more like a silhouette.
[00:41:35] And as she got closer, she started to walk faster and then she started to run. And about halfway I recognized her as my sister. She ran into me.
[00:41:45] She said, Mom and dad. Are the beaches.
[00:41:49] I just had to come and tell you that we were, you know, and I heard that voice again, you get this nature from you will go places we can sit and we will speak.
[00:42:07] The day that I left Good Shepherd. I stopped at the threshold.
[00:42:16] And a voice on one side of my head said, you know, you don’t have to do this now, my stuff was already cut.
[00:42:23] Yeah, yeah.
[00:42:26] You can stay here, you can be secure, never have to worry about it. I sure know where to find a meal.
[00:42:41] And then another voice said, you take this nature. Even though patience is a couple of states that inspired the.
[00:42:54] And I said, OK, God, I do. And I stepped over the threshold. That’s why I’m here and I never look back, and my life has been, you know. About going beyond the arguments about my boundaries are the things that keep doing, the things that I should not have done, the things that I should have that I have to do over again to make a great.
[00:43:24] The final thing I tell people. Final question, what kind of a mark you leave behind for?
[00:43:36] I’m not talking about your name up in lights, or if you put things in your casket, you look at you and say, does he look like himself? By the way, I’m having the same page from that casket.
[00:43:50] So I have to ask I told somebody I said at my funeral I wanted to be a comedy show. I want people to laugh at things like, yeah, I want people to remember.
[00:44:09] It’s fine, thanks, but I also want you to remember encouraging to challenge you absolutely every single day.
[00:44:18] Gloria, please leave a mark on some. They may not tell you, right? I remember a 13 year old boy. Dragged his mom to a concert because he heard he and his Catholic school.
[00:44:42] And he ran into the house later that day and he told his mom all about this guy is no arms, who made them laugh, and he told them that they were fiercely sleepy and that every life matters, every life is important, even the baby.
[00:45:03] Appreciate the very.
[00:45:08] His mom didn’t really want to hear that, but she certainly did want to hear me because what did he tell you that morning after school? She and her husband have a major fight. He walked out and she had gone on his school bus, which she was at the park without considering suicide.
[00:45:32] Oh, no. Oh, my goodness.
[00:45:34] That boy would not have got to go. You’ve got to come here. You’ve got to come. She not only dragged into the church we were seeing, which was a Catholic church. She dragged into the service. Second row center. She said and she wrote me a couple of weeks later, she said, Jeff. You don’t know this if you walked out and you looked straight into my eyes, straight at. And I see if they can do what he does with what Huesca? I can. I can maybe meet the one person I guess you call. I don’t know what happened to that. I don’t know her name. I just know that every single day we leave. Question is. What kind of remark? Everybody likes to use the word legacy. I was at school the other day for the. It truly had amazing spiritual.
[00:46:51] That’s the key road around religion.
[00:46:57] How did she know when she said, I don’t want anybody to think? I think that I really am a sinner saved by the grace of God.
[00:47:10] This is what I want you to think about, is what are you going to do with your. She was gracious, she was kind, and she was amazing at the end of that.
[00:47:22] You know, I sat there thinking that she lives there’s a mark at this point of the. And I thought that was pretty cool. And I wanted to be sad.
[00:47:40] And I told my wife, I said, if I have if I have a tombstone, I would just under.
[00:47:47] Masterpiece. Because that’s what we should aim to be, is a masterpiece. Put aside your excuses. The least likely was.
[00:48:09] Can accomplish the most ordinary things in a most unusual way. I saw on the news last night.
[00:48:16] A young man from Indonesia, from Afghanistan, walks three days to Turkey. To come to the United States oh, by the way, did I mention. Oh, well, and he is an Olympic swimmer. The Olympics. Oh, OK. Hoping to represent the United States at the Paralympics is already coming in second. Well, this is a kid who doesn’t know how to take no for an answer because he knows what he’s good at, right? See, that’s the difference, these guys and saying you can do anything you want. That’s not true. I’ll never be president.
[00:49:06] I don’t want to be president, so my mother used to tell me when I was a kid, just like anybody can be president of the United States giving you.
[00:49:16] Well, there are things I cannot do. What I know. Is the.
[00:49:25] God gave me a sense to know. And to shoot from what I can write and to be good at what I have, I told my son years ago, you can be anything if you are willing to work hard enough to be good. Yes, yeah, that’s better.
[00:49:53] It’s a better distinction.
[00:49:55] Yeah, and maybe you got some more.
[00:50:01] I don’t know. I think you covered just about everything because we even talked a bit about what we’re what I talked about at the beginning of is how. Because a lot of people are scared about covid and how to be able to cope with that and and I guess. Well, one thing I did want to ask you was because you did mention that you’ve had to pivot a little bit with with covid and and you’ve shared a lot of great messages with us. But you do have disappointments that still come into your life just like anybody else. You’re human, just like we all are. So how how do you how do you handle something like that that comes up? What is do you have a. Particular way of approaching something and and to be able to deal with it, if you will, for people who are dealing with it right now.
[00:51:05] A few months ago, I got an email. From ostensibly from somebody in Japan, the. This man supposedly was a billionaire, by the way, he really does exist, and it was from a foundation.
[00:51:26] That wanted me to come and be a part of the weekend. I have no idea how they heard of me. I had no idea and then just talk to them, but they were going to pay me an enormous amount of money and they were going to send a private plane and they were going to put us up in a 10 star hotel.
[00:51:51] I mean. It was like everything was over the top and a couple of my friends all kept saying to me, Jeffrey, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is, right?
[00:52:04] That they had all of these all the look and legitimacy, they had the website, they had the proposal with letterhead and then a contract with letterhead and everything, verified that they wanted me to do something I wasn’t real sure I could do. So I wanted to make sure that I could talk to them about right. The story turned out that and I called my mom, oh, this is great, you know, I mean, I was it looked like I was really going to get, you know, my feet planted on some solid ground with some very influential people that would help me to move forward as.
[00:52:50] I’ve never even told David Fagan about this. Turns out. It was pretty much a scam. But we were proceeding carefully. OK, the date isn’t until April 20, 21.
[00:53:08] Ok, we were doing all the right things. I have a niece that is in the U.K. She works for a law firm.
[00:53:16] She had. One of their attorneys is in Japan. Try to get the information found out it was for real and. My mom was talking to my wife and I had her picture her. That.
[00:53:39] It looks like it fell to. And my mom said to my wife, well, that’s pretty much the way it is with Jeffrey.
[00:53:48] He always gets his really big ideas and they go for.
[00:53:55] I was really I was really hurt. Yeah, yeah, I mean, my mom’s ninety seven years old now. She’s 98.
[00:54:03] This was before the first day. And I think that is all the work that I had done to try to.
[00:54:12] You build this relationship.
[00:54:16] If we were still steps away from being anywhere near what we wanted and I knew we weren’t going to be like that, I was really hurt. I had to remember something that my wife used to tell me all the time.
[00:54:34] You can only expect some people. As much as they’re able to do. And then you’ve got to either decide to make you whether it’s going to make you better. All right. And I have chosen to move on to the next.
[00:55:03] My ex-wife told me once or told an interviewer once that, you know, Geoffrey’s always looking for the next big thing. But that’s what you have to do. Yeah, absolutely. When one door closes, you walk to the next one. That’s right. And one window closes, you try to open the shades somewhere you cannot quit. Yeah. Now, there’s a difference between knowing when to walk away. And it’s OK to fail as long as you keep falling forward, as long as you keep failing forward. Rocky Balboa said and this is my last thought on this, you want to know more about what was said in the last Rocky movie. He said, life is not all sunshine and rainbows. It will knock you down and it will keep knocking you down and. The secret of success. Or failure is not in whether you get knocked down.
[00:56:13] Whether you keep getting up and keep moving forward, yeah. Absolutely. You can not stop moving forward.
[00:56:25] The greatest disappointment of my life. Was the day that our 14 month old grandson was killed by a drinking driver. Oh, I’m so sorry. Our daughter and our grandson was 14 until.
[00:56:46] Life is going to hit you with disappointment. It’s going to keep on knocking you down.
[00:56:52] The question is. What are you going to do with the true champion is the guy who keeps getting up and keeps moving forward and sees the masterpiece in progress?
[00:57:09] Absolutely. Oh, my goodness. This has been an amazing conversation. I shared some wonderful, wonderful words of wisdom today. There we go. And I appreciate it. If someone does want to book you for a virtual speaking tour or something. What is the best way for people to be able to get in contact with you?
[00:57:35] We have two websites for churches and religious organizations.
[00:57:39] They can contact us through tiny giant dot com Chiangmai and dot com, which, by the way, we’re going to merge eventually by the first of the year. I think the other one is Jeff Steinberg. We’re looking at Jeff Steinberg now. Looking at tiny cup contact, is there or have your audience get in touch with you. And I’ve been in touch with each other so many times. Absolutely.
[00:58:07] I’ll show you a commission I’ll graciously accept. How about that?
[00:58:17] Well, thank you so much for being here. And this was absolute honor to hear from you. And I’m really glad that we’ve gotten to know you and for you to share your wonderful story with our listeners. I appreciate you so much.
[00:58:31] It’s been amazing. And thank you so much for putting up with our postponements and such like that. And more than that, you and I have talked on the way to this very candid, very helpful. And I appreciate that a lot. And it’s my pleasure. And I’m always happy to come on and be with you.
[00:58:52] Well, I appreciate that as well. And we may have you back again sometime in the near future. So I appreciate that.
[00:59:00] So and for all of you out there who are watching and listening, thank you as well for being supporters of live, love, engage. I appreciate all of you.
[00:59:09] And in closing, as always, I always want you to be able to go out there and live fully loved deeply and engage authentically.
[00:59:20] Did you know that a majority of entrepreneurs tend to discount the importance of their work and a good number feel their success is simply due to luck? I know from personal experience that self-doubt can keep you from having the kind of life and business you desire. That’s why I’ve created a free guide called Uniquely You How to Move from Self-doubt to Self-love in four simple steps to claim your free guide.
[00:59:48] Go to live, love, engage dot gift. That’s live love. Engage dot g-i-f-t.