It wasn’t all that long ago that I was flipping through the Robert Kiyosaki book, Before You Quit Your Job in the ever-calming environment of the emergency department at The Ohio State University Medical Center. I can still hear the grungy beeping noise of various monitors and pieces of medical equipment. I was wearing a pair of micro-corduroy khaki pants that were surprisingly comfortable, albeit worn out in the quads from rubbing against the portable laptop stand I used to collect patient information. Flipping through the introduction, I had only read a few pages before my supervisor, Marie, walked by.
“Hey Marie, we need to talk. I’m putting in my two-week notice.”
You’d think I could have finished the book before putting in my two-weeks…
There was a long chain of events that led me to this moment of what seemed to look like a poor choice or a risky gamble. I didn’t have a ‘sure thing’ in the bag or a fat 401(k) to fall back on at the moment. In fact, I don’t think I had more than $1,000.00 in my bank account at that exact moment in time.
There’s never a ‘perfect’ time to pursue your passions, have a child or start a business. If you’re waiting for the ‘perfect moment’ you’ll be waiting for a very, very long time. And we know what Dr. Seuss says about those who play the waiting game…
I remember, very distinctly, there were several moments that had a defining element to my life. During my time at the OSU ED, I would drive home through a wealthy area of Columbus; Upper Arlington. Looking at these beautiful homes, so elegantly illuminated during the holiday seasons, I drove by a house and the thought hit me…
“Somebody lives here. It’s possible.”
Call it god, the universe, spirit, Infinite Intelligence or conscience, the thought resonated with me as a personal challenge I had a responsibility to face. If it were possible to live a lifestyle so far-removed from where I was at, at the moment in my life, then there must be steps and choices I could make that would lead me to change my life. Thus, I knew that these desires would not happen on their own without action, risk and breaking free from many ‘prisons’ that bound me; either self-imposed, drafted from a constrictive religious upbringing, or from an upbringing that hardly painted affluence in a positive light.
That notion of “it’s possible” stuck with me for months. It was a silent challenge in the back of my mind that I began to filter my choices through. I began to shrug the choices that clearly didn’t lead to a better lifestyle, while embracing new habits and actions.
To be transparent, I viewed this revelation (it’s possible) as more of a puzzle that I needed to figure out. It’s as if somebody handed me a completed Rubiks cube and then pointed to one that had yet to be solved. I obsessed over the idea of creating a better life and was determined to find the solution.
I’ve spoken of the following experience to only a small handful of individuals. It was the ‘tipping point’ for me.
Driving through the back country roads of Ashville, OH, to the local YMCA to work out, I reached a point where the desire in my heart was so strong that it couldn’t be contained. In that moment, I hit the realization that not only was “it” possible to accomplish, but I could accomplish it. The Rubiks cube of the world now seemed to offer itself to me, asking what it was that I desired from life. “Well, I want it all. Of course!” The thought hit my mind. Within seconds, I was screaming at the top of my lungs….
“I want it all!”
Pure gold. Inspired jazz. Perfectly plated food. Speaking in tongues. Prophetic. Inspired. PR. Love. Passion.
I had to remind myself of this moment where everything in the world became crystal clear. Now, almost 8 years later, I’m reaffirming myself of why it is that I chose to live the unconventional path of self-employment and entrepreneurship.
It’s an answer. The answer. It’s the answer to a question that was etched in the mind of a young 19-year-old kid who prayed for a better life and was given a challenge the obtain it.
Even though the path isn’t always clear or defined, my steps are ordered, planned and fueled by pure passion for the abundance life has to offer.
While the past few years have taught me incredible lessons and I’ve experienced things many will never see, I’ve picked up one important revelation in the past 8 years.
“You have to have a lot of passion for what you are doing….if you don’t, any rational person would give up.” Steve Jobs
I ABSOLUTELY LOVE WHAT I DO! I’ll say it again…I LOVE WHAT I DO!
There is nothing I’d rather be doing right now than the life I have. It is intentional, planned and open to changes as they occur. And I have absolute gratitude for every new experience, no matter where it falls on the ‘pleasant’ scale. Every opportunity, experience, and lesson is another shade of paint that is being used to paint the picture of my life. You can’t sing a chorus without the minor notes.
“Eagles soar in the mountaintops but fruit grows in the valleys.”
I am so grateful for every experience life has bestowed upon me. Were it not for the moments of success, I would lack the affirmation that pursuing your dreams is possible, rewarding and within my reach. On the same token, were it not for the moments of difficulty and struggle, I would lack perspective of gratitude that sees everything in life, no matter how small, as a blessing to be thankful for.