Wake Up Happy: The Dream Big, Win Big Guide to Transforming Your Life

Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Date: October 2015

Duration: 5 hours 38 minutes


WAKE UP HAPPY distills the wisdom Strahan has gleaned from his his childhood years in Europe where, he grew up as the youngest child in a tight-knit community on a military base, his time with the NFL where his sheer discipline and willpower made him a Hall-of-Fame, legendary football player, and his broadcast career, which puts him contact with the heartland of America every morning.


1) Grit, desire and discipline are free and the only equipment you need to start just about any endeavor you’ll set out to do.

2) Show me the baby, not the labor. No one wants to hear your complain about how hard something is. Do the work, stay focused, and remember there are no excuses

3) Sometimes you'll catch the big fish, and sometimes you won't but without a line in the water you don’t stand a chance.

4) Just thinking about it ain’t gonna make it happen. Wanting it to happen ain’t gonna make it happen. Expect it to happen and work every day to make it so.

5) The word inspire comes from the Latin word, inspirae, which means to breathe life into. When I was a pro athlete, it wasn’t enough for me to play angry or aggressively or even to train optimally. I had to literally breathe life into my game. Once I did that, I found my reason for playing, my motivation for winning. Whatever your endeavor, until you’ve tapped into and embraced the idea that is going to inspire, you won’t perform at your best.

6) Most of us count ourselves out waaaay too early. We assume that because someone else is the favorite, or even more important — everyone is "saying" that someone else is the favorite, that we shouldn’t even try for the win. There are a lot of people who are born with or who are given certain advantages. But trust me when I tell you this, the game of life is a lot fairer than we often realize. Hard work and dedication can carry you a very long way. You’ll find your place and it may just be where you least expect it.

7) Pay attention to detail, the specifics of the techniques you are trying to learn or emulate.

8) Don't ask anybody to give you anything, just ask them to give you an opportunity. You can be anything you want to be, just know you're going to have to work for it.

9) One of the toughest coaches I ever trained with worked me to the bone. His philosophy was to exhaust players individually before they went to practice with the group. But you know what? I learned more from that coach than I did from almost any other coach. Sometimes, when you’re going through something, you can’t see that even the most difficult passages are really the most formative. Find a taskmaster early in life. I guarantee, everything you do after you work with him or her will seem easy.

10) Yes, we have to prepare ourselves for the moment so that when opportunity knocks we can take advantage of it and we do that by studying the rulebooks, watching the tape, appreciating the details of whatever situation in which we find ourselves. But once the work is done, we have to relax and have fun or we’ll be so uptight, so wound up, we won’t end executing the job with the excellence we had intended.

11) Each step, each day, each moment is an opportunity for something good to happen even though something bad happened just before it. But the key is this: anything can happen, good can and does follow bad, as long as you don’t give up.

12) True love should multiply the joy in your life, not diminish all the love you already have and have treasured for years. If your partner in life doesn't do that--multiply your joy-- you're probably not in the right relationship. The same can be said of your business relationships. They should enhance and augment your sense of satisfaction and contentment.

13) You give what you need. I needed that time with the kids as much if not more then they needed me.

14) What I learned from Chris Martin and Coldplay: Be part of the cure not the disease.

15) Keep young people in your routines and in the mix. You won’t ever know it all. There is always more to learn and you never know who is going to teach you. I hold my elders in high esteem but I never discount the rookies.

16) It takes a lot of patience and humility to be the new guy who lasts long enough to be the guy in charge. You don’t often get to lead simply by raising your hand or just because you think you deserve it. You can’t ask somebody to lift you up, to leapfrog you to the front of the line. What you do will always matter more than what you ask for. So lead by example.

17) For so many of us, it’s not enough to get in the zone, to rise to the top. We have to stay there. To do that, you have to constantly up the level of difficulty. You won't be satisfied if you get too comfortable. If you're that person, seek out new challenges.

18) You always hear about these Ferraris, and you think, "Why does this car cost $300,000? Why does this Rolls Royce cost $350,000? How can they cost this much when I can get a Honda for $17,500?" But if you ever get a chance to get into a Ferrari, or you get a chance to drive a Rolls Royce, you'll understand why. Those cars are like super computers that are constantly calculating and self-adjusting every 0.30 milliseconds to give you the smoothest ride possible.The takeway --navigate your life as if it were a Ferrari. The more conscious you are, the more you process the information you’re given by observing your circumstances, your opportunities and your failures, and the more you take time to adjust-- the smoother the ride.

19) Don’t be afraid to dream a little.

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