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There are two kinds of people. Those that help you keep your dream alive and those that steal your dream.
By Dr. Greg Sgepard
Published: Winter 2000

Most people are, at times, Dream Keepers and yet, at other times, Dream Stealers. An eleven would strive to be a Dream Keeper more of the time. A Dream Stealer is someone who tries to get another person to engage in negative behavior or even non-positive behavior.
If you have high dreams and goals, you must constantly be aware of the Dream Stealers. For example, a person who says that one drink won’t hurt you is a Dream Stealer. People who are engaged in illegal or gang activities are obvious Dream Stealers. Associate with people that will help you keep your dream alive. Stay away from the Dream Stealers. Dream Keepers will help you achieve your dreams and goals.
There are two kinds of things. Things that help you keep your dream alive and those things that can steal your dream. Many things can, at times, be Dream Keepers and yet, at other times, be Dream Stealers. A Dream Stealer thing will create a negative situation or even a non-positive situation. The Internet can be a great thing or a negative thing. The Internet can help you keep your dream alive or it can be a Dream Stealer. You must choose wisely.
There are two kinds of places. Some places create a wonderful, positive atmosphere, while other places create a negative environment. An eleven who is trying to get better and achieve dreams and goals must be able to distinguish the difference between a Dream Keeper place and a Dream Stealer place. Again, you must choose wisely. A party with lots of drinking and drugs is a Dream Stealer place. Being alone in a car in a remote place on a date can be a serious Dream Stealer place for both a guy and a girl. Elevens are aware and would never put themselves in a place that could steal their dreams.
A 16-year old girl overdosed on the date rape drug GHB last September. Physicians found themselves unable to insert a breathing tube down her throat because her tongue stud blocked the instrument.
“One doctor got to the point where he said if you have to rip her tongue out, just do it,” said Shari Welch, an emergency room doctor who has witnessed three serious complications - - including one death - - during the last 18 months due to this kind of popular jewelry. “In any situation like this, seconds count.” The girl was on a respirator for 13 hours after physicians were finally able to maneuver the tubes past the stud.
In another case last September, a 17-year old young man received a serious head injury from a motorcycle accident. He also had a tongue stud blocking an intubation tube. “None of us knew how to get it out,” said Deborah Melle, a registered nurse. “Rings and unusual jewelry have gotten increasingly worse.”
One 19-year old college student had pierced jewelry in his private parts. During a car accident, the ring shredded his urethra. Said his doctor, “He is probably going to have problems the rest of his life; possibly even fertility problems.”
A 20-year old man, who has just about every part of his body pierced, has suffered infections in nearly all of them. “They just start getting all filled up with pus,” he said. “But I’ll probably try it again because girls like it.”
These four cases represent how people, places and things can steal your dreams. The girl was in a negative place where Dream Stealers gave her GHB. Then her tongue stud (thing) almost killed her. The other young men with “jewelry” all paid a tremendous price. The dream of having a family might be gone for one of them. Girls who are Dream Keepers would help the pus-infected young man realize the importance of removing the jewelry. Girls who are Dream Stealers will continue to urge this unfortunate, mixed-up soul to add more jewelry.
But, don’t people have the right to wear jewelry? Of course they do. However, what are your dreams and goals? What will help you reach your highest personal destiny? What will help you play the song that you are supposed to play? On a scale of one to ten, what do you want to be?


1. I am worth my highest goal. I deserve success. I will walk, talk, think and act like that successful person I want to be.

2. I will surround myself with positive people, places and things. I refuse to associate with any person, place or thing that creates negativity or mediocrity.

3. Nothing, absolutely nothing, will stop me from “Being An Eleven!”

In our Be An Eleven Guidebook, we have outlined three rules for success (shown above). Discuss them with your athletes. We have made it clear and easy to reproduce. Please make a copy for each athlete. Suggest that they put a copy of these rules in their locker or at home in their bedroom. Have them repeat these rules out loud in unison. These rules will keep your dream alive. They are a Dream Keeper thing. Just think how great it would be if we can help just one kid raise his/her own personal bar of excellence.

Dr. Greg Shepard
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