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  • Emily Hawkins

The Year of the Broken Piano



In 1975, Keith Jarrett, a famous jazz pianist was asked to perform at the Koln Opera House but when Keith got there a broken piano was waiting for him. The felt was worn making it impossible to hear some of the keys, other keys stuck and the piano was severely out of tune. A tuner was brought in but Keith refused to play. The concert promoter stood at Keith’s car window in the rain, pleading with him to play the concert. For her, he decided to play.


He walked out on stage that evening, sat down at the broken piano and played his heart out. Keith avoided the sticking keys, banged on the piano where the felt was worn thin, and created the best-selling jazz piano album of ALL TIME, “The Koln Concert.”


2020 is much like this. We started with hopes and dreams of the year to come but then a broken piano showed up in the form of a furlough or layoff. I encourage you to play around the stuck part of your career and focus on what's to come, the value you can bring to a new opportunity. You can do bigger things than you ever thought possible and the way through is to learn to play your broken piano.


When conditions are great, things are easy, there aren’t any distractions, no one is interrupting, temptations aren’t luring, and nothing is disturbing your stride; that too is when most everyone else does great. It’s not until situations are difficult when problems come up and the temptation is great, that you get to prove your worthiness for progress. -Darren Hardy





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