I never met Jim Quinn personally, but I knew him well.
I got to know Jim by taking seminars lead by his son and by his widow. At the end of these seminars, the course leader would tell us where it all began, at least as far back as Jim Quinn had told them.
The story had all the earmarks of the hero’s journey. We'd gather around the course leader who would regale us with the tale of William Penn Patrick, one of the first to make millions of dollars by selling cosmetics in a multi-level marketing company. Back then lawmakers tried to outlaw such companies but Mary Kay, Avon and other great network marketing organizations thrive today. Patrick was a man ahead of his time.
People would seek out William Penn Patrick and ask for his help in achieving their own lofty goals which were often huge achievements. Patrick himself narrowly lost the Republican gubernatorial nomination to Ronald Reagan in 1966. Patrick would take a large sum of money from them, thousands of dollars, tantamount to the price of a house in those days. Then he and his new client might go for a ride in Patrick’s airplane. In the open air cockpit, Penn Patrick would pilot the aircraft higher and higher, and then suddenly dive bomb towards the earth. At the last possible moment, the plane would pull out of the dive, saving their lives. Then Patrick would repeat this stunt, diving closer and even faster towards the ground.
I imagine the client probably spent his time screaming and begging for his life. During this time, William Penn Patrick was doing something remarkable. He was having a conversation with his client. He was requesting that his client promise that he would achieve his goal, possibly in exchange for surviving the flight.
Invariably the flight would end, with the client scared to death. Thereafter the client would get some coaching from Penn Patrick and go on to make the big bucks or whatever other lofty goal he had aspired to.
William Penn Patrick was a member of a group of extraordinary men. One day he crashed his plane into the ground and died. At first his friends thought all was lost, but they had the wisdom to gather and decide what could be done.
Jim Quinn wanted to change the world through workshops based on what he later called “love-based leadership.” The others insisted that his approach would only work in Southern California, if anywhere. He asked them “Where won’t it work?” They replied that it would never fly in the heart of the Midwest. With that, Jim moved to Chicago and put on his first seminar there with just three participants!
Jim later died after personally touching thousands of lives with his workshops on love-based leadership which are still held to this day. I’m glad.
Other men in Patrick’s group went on to form seminars in Patrick’s confrontational style. Here a participant might show up for a weekend event and be asked for his or her greatest fear. If the participant responded with “death” for example, the next part of the seminar might involve placing the participant in a casket and nailing it shut. Such striking techniques of experiencing fear in a relatively safe environment - combined with what the participant wanted to accomplish - would leave the participant totally empowered to achieve the goal faster and with more ease than anyone thought possible.
The men influenced by William Penn Patrick reads like a Who's Who of personal development including Alexander Everett with Mind Dynamics, Werner Erhard with est and The Forum (now Landmark Education), Thomas and Jane Willhite with PSI Seminars, and of course Jim Quinn with Lifestream.
Today it is commonplace even for corporate groups to climb high ropes courses together, where the fear of heights contributes to team building and brainstorming. Over one million people have walked across hot coals with Tony Robbins. Leaders like William Penn Patrick have paved the way for these large group awareness trainings.
Some people would say that today’s seminars are exciting enough. Some look back on est and have asked me if anyone would put up with its level of confrontation today, as if a kinder gentler seminar was a sign of progress.
But I wonder what it would be like to take that airplane ride with William Penn Patrick.
Few people are called to live a red hot life.
I created an event for those few people who dare to dream. While it’s no where near as dangerous as climbing into Penn Patrick’s airplane, the process is proven, it is effective, it is lasting and I think it’s fun to watch and fun to do. I’ve also made it inexpensive, fast and available in Columbus.
My Beliefs Breakthrough evening was designed to make your dreams real.
You have dreams.
What are you going to do with them?
When would now be a great time to start living them?
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