The greatest gift life offers us is the ability to build with our hands what’s in our hearts. I can promise you this: if you consistently shout about what you love, let people know what you want to do, possibilities start to show up. At your doorstep, over coffee, in your inboxes. Some you hope for and some you never even imagined existed. They come from close friends, people you’ve just met, and people you knew a lifetime ago. So please, don’t wait. You don’t have any time to waste. None of us do. Seek our opportunities to do what you love. And if you don’t find them, then make them. Manifest. Raise your voice. Move your feet. Find your pack. Rise, and lift others on your way up. Choose joy.
Opportunity’s last words from Mars: “My battery is low & it’s getting dark.”
May we all have lives as rich with discovery and a final chapter as peaceful. We’re lucky to have known you, Opportunity, and to see this world through your eyes. Thank you for your service.
“When a great moment knocks on the door of your life, it is often no louder than the beating of your heart, and it is very easy to miss it.” ~Boris Pasternak
I used to wait for big moments, sign posts from the universe, that I was on the right track, doing the right thing, making the right choices. Poor Brian has listened to me prattle on endlessly in my sessions with him about my plans A, B, and C, followed swiftly by the making of plans D, E, and F.
“Because what if I get it wrong?” I would say.
To which he always replies, “You need to trust yourself enough to know that no matter what happens, you’re going to make it work. You always have, and you always will.”
And he’s right. Dammit, he’s always right.
In these many years of trying to figure it all out, I’ve learned exactly one thing—that the big moments are never dressed up as big moments. I have to get very quiet to hear them; I have to stare at them for a long time to really see them for what they are. And I often have to do things that my mind doesn’t understand because my heart knows exactly what needs to be done. And my mind catches up with my heart, eventually.
My hope for you today is that you find a single moment to get very quiet, to hear the beating of your heart so that you can see the tremendously opportunity in this day. And then I hope you make the leap to make the most of it. I’m cheering for you. I’m always cheering for you.
“Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.” ~Thomas Edison
Look deeper. See what’s possible. Work like hell to make it a reality. Opportunity is not always bright, shiny, and finished with a bow. Many times, most times, it’s messy, chaotic, and murky. But look. Really look. Can your gifts and talents be of use, and if so could they create an environment that meets your standards? Don’t take yourself out of the equation just because it’s not perfect at this moment. It the potential is possible, go for it!
“I saw that my life was a vast glowing empty page and I could do anything I wanted.” ~Jack Kerouac
No matter you age, your past choices, or your current situation, every day is a blank page. You can see it as empty, or you can see it as an opportunity. It’s the same page, just a different perspective. Your move.
I was walking home from a memorial service yesterday. The person being honored at the service poured his love into the universe, into every person he met, and it came back to him many times over when he needed it most. Even in the depths of his incurable illness, he found the light that every day offered. Right to the end. His life is a powerful example of the glow that comes from the blank page. He could do anything he wanted, and he chose to be of service, to create community, to welcome love into his life with wide open arms. And because of those choices, his impact will far outlast his much-too-short life. We should all be so lucky, and we can be, if we choose to be.
If you commit to following your curiosity and passion, the opportunities will be endless. The universe rises up to support bold visions and those with the courage to turn dreams into reality.
“The 3 C’s in life: choice, chance, change. You must make the choice, to take the chance, if you want anything in life to change.” ~anonymous
This weekend I said yes to a very big chance. I never imagined this kind of opportunity was out there. I never imagined I’d be asked to take it. I have no idea how it’s going to turn out. But something in me knew this was not a coincidence, that I had to try, despite the fact that it’s a very long shot that it would work out. And you know what? It felt liberating. It felt empowering to just try. And no matter how this goes, maybe that’s the lesson—say yes and try.
A friend of was recently telling me that the time for his dream had passed. He’d missed his opportunity to do what he really wanted to do with his life. I told him about the Rose of Jericho, and what it can teach us about our lives through the process of biomimicry. I recently learned about this plant as I was doing research for Emerson’s second book. The plant hibernates, sometimes for years, when conditions are unfavorable. When drought passes and it has enough water again, it springs back to life. Our dreams are the same way. Sometimes what we want just doesn’t work out when we want it to, in the way that we want it to. The world is a generous place. When we keep a dream alive in our minds and in our hearts, we will get many chances to turn it into a reality. It’s only a matter of making sure that we recognize when that opportunity is in front of us, and that we do the best we can with what we’ve got when our opportunity comes around again.
My 2018 resolution can be summed up in one word: Yes. My friend, Ria, recently told me about an article she read in which the author explained that when you commit to saying yes, your day ends up in a completely different place than where it started. And I’m all for that. Yes to:
- building a better city, country, & world
- helping others
I’m going to make 2018 the best year of my life so far in every way. And I’m going to lift others as I rise. We’re doing this.
I’ve been doing a lot of research on career planning as I craft the materials for ACanofCoke.com, my program to provide college- and career-readiness guidance to high school and college students who need additional support. I came across Mike Rowe’s video entitled “Don’t follow your passion. Do this instead.” I don’t agree with his entire outlook though I think his point has value. I think passion is an important part of building a life and career that brings us happiness and fulfillment. But passion isn’t enough; it’s only one part of a more complex equation:
Passion + ability + opportunity = a career (and life) worth having
Identify what you love to do. Evaluate whether or not that’s where your talent lies, or where it could lie with practice and a strong work ethic. Determine the size of the opportunity that could utilize your passion and talent, or develop a plan that creates that opportunity if it doesn’t exist.
Building each piece of the left side of that equation isn’t easy, though it’s the only way to turn that right side from a dream into a reality.