January 2021 News/Columns

Waypoints: Laughing Heals the Soul

Here’s a tackle box full of the rigs that we are incapable of giving away on the water.


Waypoints: Laughing Heals the Soul

by Geremy Olson

Learning to fish and live life


WayPoint: Learning to accept a gift is harder than giving a gift. Learn to accept gifts is the starting point of learning how create relationships.


If you find my sons and myself in the boat or on the shore fishing, you will find us with a lot more tackle than most anglers tend to travel with. In this mass selection of tackle, you will find a whole lot of black and green Tackle Buddys loaded with all the colors of Prop Rigs from Missouri Secrets Tackle.  Three of these Tackle Buddys always have one special purpose – to give away. What’s interesting is that we have never successfully given them away.

After the last ten years I quit counting the number of times that someone has asked what we are doing to catch so many fish. We happily share everything that we are doing with them and then we ask if they have the tackle we are using. Most times the answer is, “No,” they don’t have tackle that is working. In this situation we don’t ask any more questions. We just open up the tackle box and toss over some of the tackle that’s working.

Pro Angler, Brenda Picht is just one of the many people we received a gift from who is now a lifelong family friend.

I have also quit counting the number of times that we have tossed one of those Tackle Buddys over to another boat when they asked what we were using to catch fish. We share how to use the tackle on them and then do our best to go on fishing. Without fail people are willing to take one or two rigs and insist that we take back the rest. Twice there was money placed in the Tackle Buddy when we took it back. It’s interesting because the purpose of those rigs is to give them away and yet no one will take them.

We don’t want to admit it but it’s easy to give something away. It’s easy to donate to a charity or someone in need. Flip the circumstances around and it’s much harder to receive a gift ourselves. It’s also part of our nature to question why someone would give us a gift. We are ok winning something but not receiving a gift.

I had to learn this the hard way after I was injured in a wildfire. During the year I was unable to work I couldn’t figure out how I was going to handle all the help I and my family was getting. It made me feel inadequate and very guilty. It wasn’t until a mentor of mine asked me if I received joy from giving to others? My answer was “well, yes”. He looked me in the eye and then asked, “then why would you take that joy away from someone else who is trying to give to you?” It stung for a while but it’s true, there is joy in giving. It wasn’t until I was confronted with this truth that I also realized the people I give to are people that I have built relationships with in both my personal life and in business.

It’s way harder to receive than to give, even on the water.

I have always loved sharing the boat with anyone who wants to hit the water. I love sharing information and tackle with anyone I see who is struggling on the water or in life. But since learning the lesson about receiving that day with my mentor, I have also learned how to set aside my pride and accept that which comes my way just as much as I give.

Giving and receiving without strings attached builds trust and relationships, not to mention, adds to your pro staff.

Over the past fifteen years I have also learned how important receiving is to starting and building relationships. In fact, it’s just as important as giving when it comes to relationships. Relationships are all about giving and receiving with a core foundation of trust. Trust is one of those things that is built or lost when we experience the expectation of others when they give. When we receive a gift that has no expectations in return, relationship is built. In contrast, when we learn that a gift has been given with strings attached, it erodes trust and breaks relationships.

Take the time to evaluate where you are when it comes to accepting gifts. Chances are, unless you’ve learned this lesson already, you are really good at giving but struggle with receiving. When you take the time to learn to receive the gifts that are presented to you, you’ll also see how it builds and strengthens relationships. This is especially true when it comes to family and close friends.

Learning to accept a gift is harder than giving a gift. Learn to accept gifts is the starting point of learning how create relationships.

 (Geremy Olson grew up in the outdoors. After being burned as a volunteer firefighter, he had to figure out how to teach outdoor skills to his children from a wheelchair while learning to walk. Today he is an inspirational speaker, FCA Outdoors volunteer, tournament director, video producer, wildfire consultant and proud father of the owners of Missouri Secrets Tackle. GOspeaks.live)

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

You may also like