Zach Sodiech's dying wish to leave the world with a song. My friend John Hein reminded me of a father's documentation of his daughter's growing up. There are those who do not share their lives in the social enterprise for fear of repercussion. That's no way to live.
You cannot help but feel extraordinarily human when viewing the stories above. Whether a tragedy, a reason to live or the simplicity of celebrating life...we have tools to help us expand our mind share. Why wouldn't you relish the opportunity to help people?
In the 5 years I have been writing this blog, I have introduced you to my family, said goodbye to friends who have transcended the earth, talked a whole lot about interpreting one's professional motivation on their own terms, used sports as a metaphor for life and escaped through music. I hope you have enjoyed the stories I have shared. I probably get more out of the process than you do.
The nostalgia of Memorial Day overwhelms me. I have been pretty good at a bunch of things in my life. I have never been reluctant to try new things. I have not, however, had the courage to dedicate myself to one thing. Those who care enough about something to die for it have a degree of dedication that I do not. There are big wave surfers who risk their lives for perfect natural acceleration and golfers who have dedicated years of their lives to hear the sound of the perfect drive. I would wish to be so perseverant.
With so much content through which to navigate, how do we find the things that are worth the investment of our limited time in this sad and beautiful place? Here are a few ideas:
As a hard working father of 2 with a wife who works harder than I do, I savor my (mostly non-existent) free time. The desire to put my feet up hits me like a freight train at the end of the day. I am acutely aware that my children will be too big to hold tomorrow. There is so much great music being performed every night, sporting events that are producing affirming moments of human achievement, films that require years of commitment to produce, and a collection of books that would take a lifetime to read.
Live now and sleep when you're dead!
Get Pissed Off For Greatness!
There are so many people who are OK with giving the minimum effort. There are people who watch too much TV, eat too much, yell at people who love them, and live life for their own entitlement. Can you not see the divine opportunity to be an extraordinary achiever if everyone else is OK with being average.
The best way to give all of yourself to something is to choose a conquest that genuinely matters to you. Complaining is a result of poor choices. You make your choices and they form your existence. Don't even try to pretend that anyone else is responsible for your success.
It's Go Time...and very few want to be part of the chase!
That line around the block is full of people who will tell you what you are doing wrong. There are very few who will invest themselves in your progress as a human being. Don't let the bastards grind you down. People are going to screw up....on a broad scale...with great precision. The art of living is helping others find a way to get through the consequence of their effort.
Be Humble in Victory and Accountable in Defeat!
I remember playing a song for a friend. When I finished I put my head down and started to explain why the song sucked. He instantly stopped me and told me it was magnificent. I was on a high school campus recently and a young man approached me with a light in his eyes to proclaim that he got in to college. I was honored to share that moment with him. Harold Crick believed enough in a story to vanish for it. Andrew Largeman may still be discovering the infinite abyss.
There are people to whom you report....none of them will save your life. Holidays are merely an excuse to remember what is important. There is opportunity every day to create and amplify a majestic existence!
Don't Forget to Remember!