Rascal and Obstacles
In the course of Chris's teachings, he has created several characters that were intended to drive home his points and make his messages more memorable.
Whether or not this proved effective may be up for debate, but the endearing characters themselves live on. The creation of these characters
has caused the accidental situation in which Chris finds himself a favorite among the younger set. It has also led to wildly popular renditions of these characters,
such as the Obstacles bobble head (available here).
Chris was giving a speech in Southfield, Michigan one evening during a time in which he had been reading a lot of Greek history.
After struggling to familiarize himself with proper pronunciation of Anglicized Greek words, he misread a word he had written largely across a white board:
the word was "obstacles." But instead of pronouncing it in the usual way, he accidentally said "aab-stock-a-leez". Immediately, he pictured a villainous
character who works to steal people's dreams and prevent them from achieving success. Chris quickly erased the word, and, acting on impulse, quickly
sketched the now famous spiky-headed character, mask and all. And just like that, a star was born!
Obstacles has since found his way into books (Rascal), coloring books, stuffed dolls, onto tee shirts, and the bobble head mentioned above.
His face pops up in all sorts of materials produced by LIFE Leadership, and he remains a crowd favorite. His popularity is probably rooted
in the fact that it is tremendously helpful for people to put a comical face on their fears.
Rascal is the precocious character that represents the dreamer and striver in each of us.
He is the part of us that doesn't fit in, that refuses to follow the crowd, that stands for justice and what's right, no matter the cost.
Rascal, too, has become wildly popular, and can often be found at leadership conventions in standup cardboard form, waiting to pose for photos
that will remind people of the fighter they have inside. Rascal is the embodiment of the sentiment that we make the biggest difference in the world
when we are true to our original selves.