I can’t start by saying that this will apply to everyone. I will say, however, that it applies to most everyone I’ve met. Each new year opens the door of opportunity to do different. People will ponder on their own what they can do to make this new year the best ever. Many will seek that one big question. “What is my calling”? One thing I’ve learned is this. To be different, you have to do different. That is a statement based upon my own life experiences. “Your calling is not just what’s smart for you. It’s what’s right for you”.
I once heard a pastor say in a sermon that there are three things to consider when trying to figure out what we’re meant to be doing. Our purpose. The first was to determine what we’re good at doing. What we know we’re good at doing. Just about everyone has something they do well. It’s not bragging, it’s based upon past performance. Me? I “feel” I’m good at public speaking, mechanics (fixing things), world travel, keeping a level head in high stress environments, influencing others and teaching. I know this cause I’ve done all of that successfully. Now ask yourself with full honesty. “What am I good at doing”?
The second is what have you been told you’re good at doing. It’s another perspective that others have noticed about you. We can only see ourselves from one angle. Other vantage points can determine whether you’ll succeed or fail. It’s something you don’t see. That’s why it’s best to collect intelligence, data, thoughts and opinions from others. Leaders do this when making important decisions. The military uses this process when planning operations. Every vantage point is considered. This is why it’s good to ask a trusted person this question. “Hey, trusted person, what have you noticed that I do well”? You may hear something totally unexpected.
Lastly, would you do what you’re good at doing for free? I recently posted a video about me delivering packages for Amazon. Something about it really fills my joy tank. I would honestly do it for free. I just enjoy driving all other God’s creation in my 4Runner, that I love, to deliver packages to folks. The best is when they’re home. I have not seen one face without a smile. It’s almost like Christmas except that they paid for what they got. This is where empathy comes in. I know how I feel when I order something I want or need. I’m excited, happy, relieved, etc. So, knowing how I feel about it and knowing most others feel the same way makes me feel good. Like I did something to serve others. I’m service oriented so that works well for me. I have taught for free, spoken to groups, fixed things and all sorts of things. It just makes me feel good. So, ask yourself the last question, “Would I do what I’m good at doing for free”?
After asking yourself those questions, ask yourself one last question. “Is it right in my head or in my heart”? Figure out for yourself if it’s moral. Our head and heart are constantly at odds with each other. We know it’s not right to steal. Period. But sometimes we may take a little extra for ourselves. You can try to justify it however you want. It’s still theft. At our root and to our core, we know what is right and what is wrong. Determine if what you’ve settled on is right or wrong. Case and point, for me. Last year I dabbled with starting a bourbon company with a very close friend of mine. We did everything that needed to be done; legally, logistically, etc. We were about to pull the trigger and something inside me just didn’t feel right. Yes, I’m a Christian and I enjoy bourbon. I sip it, not drink it. I enjoy the history of it, the process of how it goes from soil to cup. Actually, I still want to do it but there is a stirring in me that it is not what is in my plan. I could be completely wrong. I’ve asked myself why I want to do it. I could care less about fame and fortune. Money doesn’t drive me. I’m more interested in legacy building and the kind of example I’ll leave to my family when I’m gone. I want my name on something so my family can have that story. Bourbon just may not be it for me. Maybe it’s something else? Maybe it’s nothing? As I’ve aged and especially the past 5 years I’ve been in deep thought about my life. I know it ain’t over and I have a lot left in me. So, I’m on this journey of “What’s next?” and I intend to find it. Many doors are open for us, we just may not see them. I also believe that sometimes, doors may need to be kicked in. I just hope I kick in the right door.
I hope this has enlightened those of you who’ve read this. I challenge you to seek out what it is that your destined for. I don’t believe we are on this planet to simply exist. Some people’s journeys may last a thousand miles and some others may last longer or shorter. We are all on our own path and journey. May you find your way. Below are two good books to start you on your journey.