Stay YELLOW! I yelled as I sped toward the light
Two car lengths still separated me from where I would turn when the light changed to red.
No cars were in sight as I screeched around the corner.
I took my foot off the gas and slowed to a more reasonable speed as I traveled away from the intersection. I glanced around, hoping to see no traffic cops.
That was close.
I forgot about the incident. Then, several weeks later, I received a letter from the Magistrate Court that oversees Traffic violations. Various Attitudes filled my mind as I read the traffic court summons. I carried the letter to a cork bulletin board behind my door where I pin things I want to keep track of. I viciously stabbed a tack through the mailed letter, pinning it to the board.
A Win-Win Plan
By the time my court date arrived, I had a plan (A true Win-Win). Optimistically I shared my “Winners Don’t Quit” website with the judge, depicting the value I have been to students and their communities. I also suggested that providing a couple of my “Winners Don’t Quit” presentations to public schools in lieu of being fined would be of more value to the community than my paying the price of the tickets.
The traffic judge I imagined in the beginning was way worse than the very reasonable judge I actually faced.
Most people might think that judges can not be influenced one way or the other. But luckily, I didn’t think this way. I knew judges have the final say, that his or her word is law so to speak. But
they’re humans. They have the common sense to know a good deal when they hear it.
Approaching the judge with a good Attitude and a willingness to negotiate a solution that was a “Win/Win”, I confidently expected him to really listen to my proposal.
Plans or Records
He did, in fact, really listen to my idea, but I found out later that my not having had a ticket in over ten years played a bigger role in opening his mind than any confidence I may of had.
Two beautiful things about this entire situation are:
- Many students got a free showing of the leadership version of my Winners Don’t Quit talk.
- I didn’t have to pay the ticket that ended up not even going on my record.
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