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Dear Fellow Former Players & Friends,

I feel like I’m enjoying this life. I’m having a good time and I like a good laugh. But am I really living?

I don’t take a lot of chances. I’m low risk and careful. Sometimes that keeps me from being the most I can be. I’m not talking about dodging trains, skydiving or body surfing with sharks. I won’t risk my life, but in 2018 I want to do things differently and dare to live.

I mostly say ‘no’. But in 2018 I will say yes to things I normally avoid. Situations I don’t engage because it takes more effort and it’s outside of my comfort zone.

Stretching myself and adventurousness is different than acting crazy. I’m not suggesting anyone should act up. But don’t plan for every second or count down the minutes to when you can get back on the couch. Just see where the day takes you.

This is not professional development. This is personal development. And this year I’m giving ‘Safe Andre’ permission to be adventurous. That is my desired change.

Take the dare with me to live outside of your comfort zone and make a positive change.

Here are some tips to help you make that change.

Surround yourself with a few good people. Who in your wide circle of friends and acquaintances is living or participating in your desired goal or activity? Identify one or two people, ask for their support and tag along. They can help you change, be open and listen. You’ve heard this before change doesn’t happen alone

Never get tired of evaluating who you are. Take inventory.  Don’t focus on what needs to improve, but rather focus on where you are in life. Focus on what you can offer and build on it.

Have a plan. How much can you change before March 1st or April 1st? When it starts to warm up outside you don’t want old bad habits to warm up too. Organize that time in week long increments. Sunday is always a good day to reflect and evaluate progress and your feeling of achievement.

No plan is exact. Be willing to adjust if your desired result is not happening.

Forget about resolutions of years past. Today is the day. Live in the present. Start small. Don’t be nervous. Just be you. This is your time to reset your pathways.

You can apply this strategy to most things. Decide how this approach to change can benefit you. You don’t have to be perfect in the new year.

You just need to try to be the best version of you.

Andre Collins


Executive Director
Professional Athletes Foundation
NFL Player 1990-1999

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