Lessons learned from Tom Hoobyar

This is my tribute to the late Tom Hoobyar — a wonderful, generous, warm-hearted man who died 25 September 2011. Tom’s daughter Tracy asked people to post lessons they’d learned from Tom, who was an entrepreneur, NLPer, and teacher and mentor to many.

The main lessons I learned from Tom Hoobyar were:

  1. Tom didn’t let his own mistakes or setbacks prevent him from being a leader, teacher, and mentor. I used to think I had screwed up too much to teach or lead. Tom was one of the people who helped me learn that my mistakes and challenges, lived through, become benefits. Having had those experiences, I can help other people deal with similar issues more gracefully.

  1. Tom created tremendous benefits for others, and grew around himself a community of people who loved him and benefited from having him in their lives. These are things I have always wanted to do, things I now do to some extent. Tom’s example inspires me to do a lot more.
  2. Do the most important things now, because you might not have time later.This is something that I, as a breast cancer survivor, am acutely aware of all the time. It has changed how I live my life. Most of us live like we have a secret guarantee of several more decades to do the important stuff. In reality, none of us ever really knows for sure how long we have. Tom’s sudden illness and death reminds us of this. If there’s something or someone you love, if there’s something you want to accomplish, if there’s something you passionately want to do with your life… start today, and keep going until you achieve it. Do what you can right now, and however much or little that is, it will open the doors to the next step, and the next.

Tom lived a full life. I’m very, very grateful that among all the billions of people on this Earth, he and I got to meet, and to know each other a little.



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