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Man Shoes Hardcover – May 14, 2011
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Tom Watson possesses a unique and powerful characteristic: optimism. This is very important to me personally, because several of my mentors have taught me that optimism is a choice; it’s a decision that we make on a daily basis. In the face of potentially paralyzing adversity, Tom chose optimism. He continues to make that choice every day – for the sake of his three boys, his wife, his business associates, friends and community. It was not an easy choice by any stretch of the imagination.
There is so much in these pages that resonates with me, both on a personal and professional level. Man Shoes is honest, it’s humorous, it’s inspiring...and as Adam promised, it’s impossible to put down. As the father of 19 children, 14 of which were adopted from four different countries, I have experienced firsthand how opening your heart and home to a child makes a lifelong difference. The power of changing lives through fostering and adoption was not lost on Mr. and Mrs. Watson, who brought little Tommy into their home when he was just five years old. Their home and their love became the anchor that would stabilize him through the stormy seas of life. Without it, Tom Watson would have been adrift.
The feeling of belonging, of feeling safe, of knowing that you are loved, and the importance of that security in the life of a small child are themes that dance throughout this heartfelt book. From childhood, through adolescence and into adulthood, Tom, like all of us, had some hard lessons to learn as he grew to fill the “Man Shoes” that allowed him to be a better husband and father. He speaks to both men and women about responsibility and what that looks like in each of those roles.
Tom exemplifies so many of the qualities that I value. Passion in what you do, in your career, in your family and in your faith. Truly loving what you do, as Tom does, spills over into all areas of your life and perpetuates the positivity that is so critical to being a role model to your children. The power of leading by example when molding the values of your children cannot be underestimated. Tom always brings a healthy dose of humor and characteristic devilishness to both the silly and the serious times.
Man Shoes in an invaluable, personal story of empowerment that will motivate readers to live their best lives. This book is for anyone struggling with the challenges of new parenthood or the responsibilities of adulthood. Watson’s book is a slam dunk!
—Pat Williams, Senior Vice-President The Orlando Magic, Orlando, FL
National Basketball Association (NBA)
About the Author
More About the Author
Is it really that simple? Tom knows it is, because his own life story is a splendid example of truly living a better life.
As a highly successful business leader, and a dynamic international speaker and consultant, Tom Watson has dedicated his life to inspiring people to have more fun while striving for excellence in their personal and professional lives. Tom is a customer service specialist and a true entrepreneur, having built a variety of successful businesses from the ground up, including Recreation Excellence, a highly successful recreation services and facility management company in western Canada. In all of Tom's business ventures, the key ingredient to his success is FUN. He is committed to empowering people to achieve balanced success by working hard and having a whole lot of fun along with way.
In addition to his professional experience as a business leader, Tom has an extensive educational background, including an undergraduate degree in Recreation & Parks and a Masters in Human Leisure Development. He also successfully completed training in dozens of courses and programs in the fields of leisure and recreation, public speaking and coaching, and is a certified customer service trainer.
Tom attributes much of his personal and professional success to the lessons he learned through sport. As a young man, Tom was a successful multi-sport athlete with a highly competitive spirit. His passion for sport ultimately led to a successful amateur coaching career, during which Tom coached football, basketball, volleyball and hockey teams to championships. He has worked with elite teams, such as the Vancouver Canucks and the British Columbia Lions in hosting pre-season training camps and championship games. He also organized and hosted many other provincial, national and international sporting events in curling, hockey, volleyball, swimming, lacrosse and more.
Tom is also an active member of many organizations and serves as a board member and team leader for many of them. In his travels to Africa, Tom aided governments in Zambia, Kenya, South Africa and Rwanda to establish sport and recreation systems and networks. In addition, Tom and his employees fundraised and financed the construction of 56 homes in Zambia. Tom's teams also helped sponsor well-digging projects in Kenya, and sent more than 5,000 pairs of eyeglasses to Haiti.
A testament to Tom's positive attitude, resilience, competitive spirit and commitment to helping people live a better life is his heart-warming life story, Man Shoes. Man Shoes explores Tom's rich life-brimming with experiences of love, tempered by heartache and loss, cemented by traditions, and enriched with laughter and shared stories.
Of course, fun is not the only factor in the formula for building Your Better Life. You have to work hard, be willing to give far more than you receive, and you must honor your faith with commitment while building a strong support network to back you when the going gets tough. Tom credits his own continuing success to his deep and abiding faith, his wacky sense of humor, an unquenchable thirst for life, and a strong reliance on traditions, which have helped him shape a positive world view while celebrating each special moment in his life, from the miniscule to the monumental.
Top Customer Reviews
Please feel free to view my full review at [...]
Through Tom's unique storytelling, "keeping it real" the whole way along, you'll laugh, cry and learn to appreciate life even more than today, but most of all, you'll want to share what you read.
Man or Woman, Parent or Child, read this book. It will remind you that love CAN conquer all.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Man Shoes is a must read and an inspirational book for people of all ages. As a friend of the author I did not know he edured such heartbreak as a child and in his adult years... Read morePublished on July 4, 2012 by Judy Flaherty
Man Shoes is an inspirational story about a man who was a neglected and abused as a child. He grew to see his worth as a person of possibilities ONLY when some very special people... Read morePublished on April 9, 2012 by MomBlogger
After reading this inspiring book, and was finished crying, I became angry. Angry and heartsick regarding the seemingly endless news stories about children being murdered by their... Read morePublished on March 20, 2012 by Betty Ochs
This was a great story that was so inspirational. As a reader you are brought into the story and able to see how one man has taken the pieces of his life and made himself a better... Read morePublished on November 26, 2011 by Dad of Divas
Tom Watson wrote a compelling story of his life. He was in foster care and overcame a lot of adversity. Read morePublished on November 21, 2011 by Skywalker9
Tom shares the story of his life. In the midst of the struggles, pain and joy we see how it is possible to make it through any experience life throws at us. Read morePublished on November 5, 2011 by Shawn
Even though I normally only review books for children or young adults, I jumped at the chance to read and review Tom Watson's new book, `Man Shoes, The Journey to Becoming a Better... Read morePublished on October 26, 2011 by Maranda Russell
We all become better men, husbands and fathers in different ways. I think that is largely because we are all raised differently. Read morePublished on September 13, 2011 by Bill Grandi
I loved how Tom Watson wrote this book to give us a glimpse into his life and how we can all learn from his experiences. Read morePublished on September 8, 2011 by Steve S