Between Trapezes, by Gail Blanke
Reviewer: Mark Lamendola
You've seen trapeze artists do amazing things. Maybe you've thought,
"I wish I could do that." In one sense, you can. Watch
carefully, and you will notice there is always a time trapeze artists
are between trapezes. They must let go of one trapeze so they can grab
onto another. This is the only way they can be successful. And, it's
what you must do to be successful.
Let's put you in this picture for a moment.
Imagine yourself swinging on a trapeze high overhead. Can you let go
of one trapeze to grab onto another? Or, would fear keep you from
letting go? It's a long way down. Are you sure about your answer?
You may be saying, "Of course I would let
go. How else would I be able to do what I'm really supposed to be
But, would you let go? This metaphor of the
trapeze aptly applies in life, and it forms the theme for this book by
Gail Blanke. As you read this book, you will gain insight into what
degree you let go of the old and embrace the new--or let the old
trapeze hold you back. And, you will find practical insights to help
you do what you are really supposed to be doing.
You may find that you aren't letting go, after
all. Most of us find this to be very difficult, if not completely
What if you let go of the trapeze and could not
catch the next one? You would fall. In the circus, you'd have a safety
net. In real life, you seldom have one. And that is enough to paralyze
us into letting go, so that we soar to the next trapeze bar. Instead,
we hang onto the old one, letting fear rob us of the opportunity to
fly to new rewards and new adventures. In the process of hanging on,
we may stop moving and fall anyway. And many people do.
So, what does Ms. Blanke have to tell us about
letting ourselves be between trapezes?
Ms. Blanke established herself in the executive
ranks, first at Avon. She is now CEO of Lifedesigns. Her string of
accomplishments started in her youth, when she was a champion swimmer.
She missed qualifying for the US Olympic team by one tenth of a
second! She is a motivational speaker with other books to her credit.
She's also an executive coach, and her clients include such notables
as Senator Bob Graham.
She has spent a fair amount of time between
trapezes herself, and in this book she shares insights that are both
practical and motivational. She walks through case histories that show
how she and other successful people faced and overcame doubts--how
they let go of the old trapeze bar and grabbed the new one. And she
provides exercises that can help you do the same.
If you're stuck in the same old routine and
wonder if there's more to life, the answer is yes. If you work hard at
your job but can't seem to get ahead, the answer is probably in this
book. If you just can't bring yourself to let go of old notions or old
doubts about yourself or others, this book will show you how.
One old notion many people have is they are
right about others being wrong. Being right in this way feels good at
first. But, it keeps you hanging onto the trapeze of what others are
doing wrong rather than allowing you to reach for the trapeze of what
you are doing right. Listen to yourself talk. Is it about
"them" or about you?
If you are mulling over what other people did,
you are hanging onto the old trapeze. Playing the "somebody done
me wrong" song simply is not going to allow you to create an
environment for success. You have to move on. The same cure applies if
self-doubts make you put a death grip on the old trapeze so that you
cannot be the person you are capable of being.
Let go of the old, and embrace the new. Ms.
Blanke expertly guides the reader in exactly how to do that. You've
got to make moves anyhow, no matter which trapeze you hang onto. Why
not make the right moves, by letting go of the old trapeze? Once you
allow yourself to be between trapezes, you will be able to use the new
trapeze to reach new highs of success.
I found the book a delightful read, and it made
me think in new ways. That's a refreshing combination. More than that,
it's a winning combination.