Ok, at the request of several friends, I present Rule # 3: You have a team. Whether you like it or not, you are NOT a solo act. And whether you pick em or not, you are part of a team—whether it’s the dysfunctional group of cubicle dwellers you hang out with at work, or the people who by fate or realtor machinations call your street home, unless you are a hermit in a cave on a mountain top in Nepal, you are part of a community.
It is better to choose your team instead of letting it happen to you. Pick people who you can rely on, whose taste you trust and whose energy uplifts you and does not drain you. Always take first round draft picks—the folks that have talent and brains and skill that can benefit your ongoing operation. Don’t be a martyr and get into victim mode dragging around a team that weighs you down and slows you to a crawl. If you need to, create farm teams of folks you have your eye on to move to your majors. Farm team helps you with the teacher appreciation lunch, the majors help you bury your mother. Make sure your team includes offensive and defensive players—offense takes you shopping when your wardrobe makes you look like an old lady, defensive players tell you to leave the second piece of cake alone and help you start a walking club. Build a big team, one with lots of bench strength. Even the best quarterback can get injured and be out for the season, so always have team members in the wings.
Which means you have to devote part of your life to recruiting, caring and feeding team members. When you are working 60 hour weeks for the last quarter and your laundry has not been done since you brought last season’s clothes down from the attic, the last thing on earth you want to do is host a dinner party to wine and dine your recruits, or go to that book group when you could be taking an evening long bubble bath. But you have to do it. It’s the best investment you can make in winning the game: also known as holding your life together. Trust me: take the Team seriously in your life.