Ten years later, I finally follow my own advice.
On June 13th, 2009, I gave the graduation address to my Penn State Executive MBA class and it took ten years to make good on my own words. These words came rushing back to me during a December, 2019, Momentum Community call led by Jenny Blake. The Momentum Community was founded by Jenny Blake, an author and business/career strategist who wrote PIVOT.
Jenny was challenging us to think about our work in 2020. She made an analogy about amusement parks and roller coasters. I instantly thought of my speech...and so here is an excerpt of my speech:
like a ride at an amusement park
....We can think of each stage of our life like a ride at an amusement park. Sometimes it is a roller coaster—with ups and downs and thrills. Sometimes it is a merry-go-round—a nice ride but we end up going in circles. Sometimes people watch us going in circles, thinking we are having a great time….but really, we are not.
I know this is why some of us came to this program.
Many times we like the ride so much we race back like a little child to ride it again and again and again. But each time we do, the thrill leaves us more and more. Eventually we tire of that ride and go to the next.
If it’s a popular ride, we will even wait in line with many others for a very long time—all of us believing this next ride will be the best ride.
I hope this program has been one of the best thrill rides of your life, but it is now time we all get off this rollercoaster and find a new ride.
But which ride? What will you do next? How will you use this education? Remember that all the rides out there now, someone else has built for us—someone else’s design.
I challenge you to take what you learned and build your own ride. Build your own excitement in life. I have seen talent and great spirit in each one of you.
Take what you have learned and shape your career to fit your passion. That will be a ride that will never bore you.
I challenge you to build that ride.
For some of you, building something to fulfill your passion may not be enough…for you I have a greater challenge.
I have seen great ideas flow from each one of you. People will follow you.
I have witnessed your entrepreneurial spirit.
I challenge you to build a ride that others will want to ride. When you are done riding it, others will still want to stand in line for the ride you built.
I challenge you…
In 2020, I Challenge you
Yes, it has been over 10 years since I gave this speech, but sometimes it's serendipity that returns us to our true selves.
“Take what you have learned and shape your career to fit your passion. That will be a ride that will never bore you. I challenge you to build that ride.”
Take some time to reflect on how you spend your time at work. Does it make sense? Do you wake up with joy and excitement to start the day's work? How does it feel?
In 2020, I invite you
I have been a member of the Momentum Community for #solopreneurs for just 6 months and it has changed my life drastically ― helping to hold myself accountable and getting the support I need to build this new ride.
Later this week, I will write more about how Momentum and Jenny helped build my ride. In the meantime, I invite you to read more about the Momentum Community.
You can also join us on March 3rd at 10:00 EST for a special masterclass webinar by Jenny on “Your Book & Big Idea.” This is a great opportunity for you to get to know Jenny and her heart-based business philosophy. Use my private link to sign up via the Momentum Interest List.
I leave you with this short video clip from a rainy afternoon at Disney's Animal Kingdom. We were waiting for a ride.
Out of the corner of my eye, I see this little boy dancing in the torrential rain while we all watched and waited.
Why just watch?