Success – A Resume Builder Among Other Things

Brian Childers 
MDI Contributor

As I question where I have achieved some success in my life, I consider some insights I have gathered along the journey. For example:

  • Many of my successes have come as the result of things “just falling on me.”
  • It is said that luck is when preparation meets opportunity.
  • My first acting (extra) experience was a result of playing drums and meeting a producer friend of a band mate.
  • My first teaching experience/opportunity came as a result of having my position at EarthLink eliminated.
  • Some things that looked and felt like failure at the time seem, in retrospect, to have been preparing me for a future success.
  • Some of my success has been due to commitment / stubbornness.
  • Some has been due to, and in spite of, my drive / need for acknowledgement.
  • Once I got clear about that tendency / need in my life, I took effective action to mitigate it and not let it own me.
  • I have been fortunate to have had many varied experiences in life – it certainly has not been boring.
  • Now, I am able to mentor others from my experience and the lessons I have learned therefrom.
  • Some of the things that have caused me the most pain have also brought me the most freedom once I outlasted / endured the pain and grief.

With all this as a backdrop, this success story just came to me:

In 1998, I was in the Introduction to the Forum Leaders Program (IFLP, now ILP) at the Atlanta Landmark Education center. It was a classroom session on a Friday night. I had had an “aha” and was in the front of the room “sharing” with the class and instructors. I had realized – starkly – that I had always played for #2 in my life, never #1. Not sure of all the reasons for that, but one was being NO GOOD at ball sports (due to vision problems that I have only finally understood at age 68). Another reason was being the last one chosen, therefore, for most ball games. A.K.A. – you’re not worthy or good enough to be number 1.

So, I gathered up my courage, threw my metaphorical hat over the metaphorical wall and declared that “I” would be the FIRST person “candidated” (successfully completed) from the Atlanta IFLP class. I made this declaration in front of everyone present.

Next, I received a STANDING OVATION (Like the ALL CAPS?) from the entire room in support of said declaration.

Fast forward, who do you think was the FIRST person candidated (by a lot) from the Atlanta IFLP class? 

Drum roll, please….


OK, big deal right?  Mostly no one ever heard of any of this stuff anyway. Fair enough, however, that thing that I broke open – with a sense of courage, insight and commitment – opened the door for other such wins in my life, happily shared:

  • Featured in two national TV commercials – for EarthLink – while I was an employee there.
  • Currently appearing in a Provarin spot (
  • Appearances in two network TV series (The Resident and Queen of the South) and was able to turn the latter into a recurring co-star role – due to my diligence in researching the relationship of characters.
  • Taught (ITIL) at the Pentagon and NASA Headquarters within two consecutive weeks.
  • Generated a possibility, formed a plan, executed the plan and married the woman of my dreams within a year.
  • Became the first U.S. “Member” of the Institute of Service Management.
  • Taught COBIT in China, Japan, Hong Kong, Dubai-U.A.E., Jordan, Kuwait, Nigeria, Switzerland, Brazil, and Holland.
  • Earned a Black Belt in Tang Soo Do at age 48.
  • Earned a Distinguished Handgun Expert qualification from the NRA.
  • Completed the Disney Marathon, my first and only, at age 59.
  • Two years as Chairman of the Board of Directors of MDI.
  • Presently reigning Redfish champion of the Tom Thurmond Semi-Annual fishing trip and bullshit convention.

This is not intended as a boastful resume listing, but an example of the results of combining insight, commitment and courage – something of which we all have access.

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