River running through the mountainsI’ve penned Lessons from the Cockpit for over four years and in all those posts I don’t believe I’ve written one as important as this. If I’ve cultivated any major life philosophy over the years, this is it.

In 2010 I launched a business with two partners, great people whom I trust completely. We’ve grown from only three of us initially to nearly fifty employees. Last week we were named number nineteen of the fifty fastest growing companies in our region. The company has exceeded my expectations in every way, and I feel the best is yet to come.

I share this to highlight the fact that I’m not a passive guy. Anyone who knows me will attest that I don’t sit and wait for things to happen. I look to the sky for lots of things—peace, inspiration, fun—but I’ll never lift my eyes upward with the expectation a financial windfall will float down and land at my feet.

To an outside observer, it may appear that anything I accomplish is through extreme effort and sheer force of will, where I try to bend my surrounding world to a mold of my making. Nothing could be further from the truth.

When I was younger, I did try to force life, tried to make things happen my way, on my schedule. But nothing ever truly worked out. When I say “worked out,” I mean to my satisfaction. I had successes, but they always left me exhausted and rarely fulfilled. Most of the time I seemed to swim upstream, struggling against a rushing river that tried to push me the opposite direction. At the end of the day, I’d barely covered any distance and felt empty and tired.

Life is very different now. Over the last five years, I’ve made a huge shift in my life and how I navigate it. That change has helped tremendously, and nothing could be easier to do. Next week I’ll tell you how.

 

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