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"We are the protagonists of our stories called life, and there is no limit to how high we can fly."

Type rated on A330, B747-400, B747, B757, B767, B737, B727. International Airline Pilot / Author / Speaker. Dedicated to giving the gift of wings to anyone following their dreams. Supporting Aviation Safety through training, writing, and inspiration.

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Keep it Burning

Put a Log On Your Fire

Feeding yourself with motivation
is like putting a log on your fire...
Don't let your fire go out!

31 years ago today...

I was in my kitchen, baby in the high chair, my eldest daughter had just turned 4 on the 12th, and my middle daughter would be three in April. I had the television on watching the Challenger. The kids were sitting at the kitchen counter, coloring. I turned my back for  moment, and my two-year-old says, "Mommy the Space Shuttle exploded."

January 28, 1986
It took me awhile to digest that, as it did for the entire world. Then shortly thereafter a Tony Robbins advertisement came on the television selling a series of tapes for personal power. I called the 1-800-number and bought them. I definitely needed a change of state at that moment. That moment was locked in my memory. Emotion does create memory. 

We were talking about that day. The discussion was on goal setting and motivation. 31 years ago he had said to me was, "Why do you need motivation tapes? You're the most motivated person I know." I had replied, "You can never stop learning or hearing this stuff. It's like lifting weights, if you continually lift you will get stronger."

I actually could not remember the exact date, so I googled it. One day away... from the 31st anniversary. What are the odds?

Enjoy the journey 
And remember to stoke your fire!
XOX Karlene


  1. I remember watching it on TV,and like everyone else I was shocked.Then I saw the parents of the astronauts who were there to watch what we all expected to be a wonderful occasion.The shock and the horror on their faces as their children were obliterated before their eyes was an occasion me and the rest of the world will never forget.

    1. John, I can only imagine the horror and disbelief of those family members and friends. That was horrific for me, and in hindsight probably the reason why I ordered those tapes. I wanted control of my life. But the reality of what happened... there was no control. All we can do is the best we can.
      Thank you for your comment.

  2. Karlene, your young daughter was very perceptive to
    understand what she was witnessing...

    Do you know Tony Robbins, or am I mis-reading?

    I wonder if the astronauts were aware, for an
    instant, what was occurring? Or maybe they
    were suddenly at Heaven's Gate...

    Can some of your SAFETY ideas be applied to
    what happened, or was it just bad luck?

    1. Dan, she was and actually still is. I think we were just watching the shuttle and she knew what happened... or someone said that.

      I wish I knew Tony Robbins, I have been reading and listening to him for years... so I feel like it. I know how he thinks.

      Absolutely everything I'm learning about safety culture could have prevented this. From the one point the engineer said they did not listen to him. Safety culture is about listening, learning, reporting, and being flexible and not retaliating. You should read this article. Interesting from a memory so long ago.

      Thank you for the comment!

    2. Dan, I forgot say... I would venture to say that they never knew and went doing what they loved.

  3. The best motivation for me is when someone tells me that I will never be able to accomplish what I wish to accomplish or in a worst case scenario, motivation brought on by fear, but that's for another topic.

    As for that event, I remember it well. I was in 4th grade in Princeton, Indiana.. about an hour south of Terre Haute on Highway 41..

    1. We were all there in one way or another. And I love your motivation... me too! Everything they said I couldn't do... I prove them wrong. I think this will be one of those times in my life.
      Thank you for the comment!

  4. Bob Ebeling. Karlene, I just read the article that you
    referred me to!

    1. Thank you Dan. That is so sad, he lived so long with that. And nobody listened to them. Yes... it's all about safety culture!

  5. It was a great tragedy that the whole world watched unfold. It highlighted how delicate we can be through risk of pushing the limits. Space isn't designed for us but we still can't resist the temptation of the unknown. Why do we do these things. What's next.
    Let's wait and see but moments in history inspire others to achieve dreams that sometimes are truly unbelievable. How boring would we be sat on earth without inspiration.
    We can achieve the unachievable with drive, confidents, guidance and good teaching. For some people this may only be a walk to the shop or driving a car. To others it maybe flying a plane, fighting a war, becoming a world leader or beating a disease. Whatever it is humanity rocks. Many choices one chance. Live it, love it and never regret a decision right or wrong. Every day is new day
    Chears world

  6. Hi Karlene,

    My name is Anuj Agarwal. I'm Founder of Feedspot.

    I would like to personally congratulate you as your blog Flight To Success has been selected by our panelist as one of the Top 100 Airline Blogs on the web.

    I personally give you a high-five and want to thank you for your contribution to this world. This is the most comprehensive list of Top 100 Airline Blogs on the internet and I’m honored to have you as part of this!

    Also, you have the honor of displaying the badge on your blog.



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