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 November 2005 • NIRSA news and information
Front Page Membership Education Conference & Expo Sports Foundation Leadership Notes Research
Greg Jordan
Leadership Notes

Random acts of kindness make a difference

The month of October has been a wonderful experience for me as I've had the opportunity to travel to a number of state and regional conferences. Having the chance to visit other campus recreation centers and meet members reinforces that recreational sports makes a huge difference at our institutions. We have quality programs and services delivered to the entire university community. Many of our mission statements refer to healthy lifestyles as well.

But what about us, the NIRSA Member who provides these services? We need to be taking care of ourselves, as how often do we hear that the internal customer is important, too?

I'd like to share a personal experience from the Annual Conference in Orlando that provides an example of a random act of kindness that has made a big difference in my life.

I might subtitle this "the six words that changed my life." Please read on.

While attending the James Madison University gathering, NIRSA Member Mitch Nettesheim re-introduced himself to me. (Mitch just joined the Purdue staff!) He noticed that my posture wasn't the best, and that I walk with a limp, thanks to osteoarthritis. Mitch is a personal trainer as well, so he shared some thoughts on the need to take good care of myself, especially with the upcoming year serving as President. His motivation to help me was genuine, as was his concern. I truly appreciated the motivational session!

So what are the six words? Mitch went on to say that even though I might not be able to work out 3 times a week, there is something I can do twice a day that will make a difference. The six words are "brush your teeth on one foot". This multitask exercise improves balance and forces you to use your inner core to do so. It also helps posture, regardless of age or gender.

Thanks to Mitch, I've been doing that every day since and it has made a difference. I feel better and stronger, and I need it.

My closing point is that this random act of kindness from a friend and a colleague has helped me beyond any expectation I might have. So when an opportunity presents itself, reach out to a friend or a colleague – it's well worth it!

And, I'd suggest to everyone to try brushing your teeth on one foot! (Don't forget to alternate.) Thanks Mitch!

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