I’ve finally hit the road and a month in (I can’t believe it), in my ’74 Airstream to see what I can find out about our country and the state of affairs we’re in. But, truth be told, to find about about myself and the current state of affairs I’m in as well. Beginning in Yellowstone National Park seemed fitting. I began there at twenty-one, freshly out of college and could see the future wide open like the valley floor I worked at that summer. What have I learned since then almost forty years since? Countless fits and starts, beginnings and never endings have haunted me. What am I meant to do, I plague myself with how did I get here and what is my purpose here with the time I have left?
I grew up chasing dreams. Chasing a living. But, also chasing a life. As I look back on the years, as the world spins around each year, I see so clearly it was there all along. I mean. From birth. We think chasing something outside ourselves is the American Dream.
You see, I believe we all have it in us. We really are born equipped with the full package. But instead, we think we aren’t good enough, don’t have it, want more. Everything out there, just beyond reach. We look around us instead of running our own race. Until we say enough. We’ve had it and we know it.
So, I want to make a suggestion. To go on a treasure hunt. To find the real you. I’m not trying to sound grandiose here, instead, to get curious. It’s a solitary job to get still with yourself. No running. No hiding. No expensive therapy. No outrageously expensive “life” coaches that never get to the meat.
I became curious with how exactly do we tap into what many go on monastery mountaintops for years to discover?
I believe the simplicity of the opposite is necessary to find our true calling, our dharma, our purpose, whatever you want to call it. It’s the most fundamental of pursuits. Why we are here. After years of pondering this, I think it’s really quite simple if we can trust ourselves. The past leaves clues like a thief in the night wearing light up Nike tennis shoes. Crafting a life of soul is merely looking back on your childhood and also your happiest days.
Take out a sheet of paper and write down things that called you and get curious like you are meeting yourself for the first time. Your best moments, even if it was a moment ago!
For example, in my childhood I loved many things. I had a poster on the wall of a penguin that didn’t look like the rest, proclaiming, “I’ve got to be me”.
I loved Snoopy. I played John Denver albums as a little kid over and over about filling my senses like a mountain in springtime. Loved skiing and felt like that is what it must feel like to fly. My least favorite word was “can’t”. I loved riding a wave in the ocean and feeling the challenge of being alive. I loved philosophical conversations about love, redemption and loss.
So, what is different? Nothing! And I’m willing to bet if you do what you love now that you will feel the same. I am a died in the wool entrepreneur just like that penguin. I love dogs and will always have at least one as a true confidant to help me understand this life. I am motivated by nature and crave being out in it on a daily basis, like John Denver was. Skiing fuels my soul and reminds me of the joy of life and my body. I still keep ‘can’t ‘out of my vocabulary. I am even more mesmerized by the ocean than ever and seek it out often. I am an insatiable learner, reader and lover of deeper conversation. And working with my hands, my head and my heart always guides me to right thinking.
Each one of us must take space and time for reflection. We must be able to detach for a moment and see ourselves, like being up in a plane looking down, from a distance. We need peace. We need stillness. We need to listen to the birds and to the wind. Only then can we act. Only then are we fit to lead.
There is only one you in the history of time.
What will your legacy story be?
Windows rolled down, and always know you’re in the driver’s seat,