Some Childhood Aspirations Come True
Some of my childhood aspirations come true. And some childhood aspirations drifted into oblivion.
I’m delighted I grew up on a farm, but milking cows cured me of any desire to be a dairy farmer. I hated the monotony of milking cows twice a day. Tractors are fun. Machinery is fun. I admire farmers and love farm life, but I imagined getting away from the farm.
In elementary school I imagined being a hermit. There’s something exhilarating about being secluded and alone. My hermit-voice is my introvert voice. I’m still a hermit today. I don’t live in a shanty with an outhouse but I enjoy my own company. My imagined self took on a new form but my childhood aspirations live on.
Some people prefer death to public speaking, but I’ve been imagining myself speaking in front of groups since I was 13. In this case, imagination became reality.
I always imagined myself successful as a leader and speaker, but my broadest impact comes from writing. I didn’t attempt writing until my 50’s. I never imagined a global reach.
Speaking and writing came together when I received my first invitation to speak to a group of church leaders. It must have been about 2001 or so. I told my wife we could make money doing this. We laughed.
Our first trip overseas happened because a group in Ireland completely changed their approach to reorganization because of an article I wrote. They were having a grand re-launch of their organization and thought I should be there. So we flew to Ireland.
And then leadership coaching came out of the blue.
I am – in many ways – the person I have been since birth. On the other hand, one thing leads to another; new aspirations find life. I am surprised that both things are true.
What were some of your childhood aspirations?
How have your childhood aspirations come true?
I was always a creative soul. I remember folding sheets of paper in half and attempting to write a book as a child. I tried cartoons and got frustrated. I spent a lot of time with my maternal grandmother. My brothers are 5 and 8 years older than me, so I didn’t have them as playmates. In our church the priest wore microphones like you would a piece of jewelry, clipped an hanging around the neck. I used one of my long three dimensional rectangular blocks as my mic and tied it around my neck with twine, and preached to no one in particular. Today I write and I speak, although there has been some self-sabotage at play on both fronts so I always dial back after I hit “a ceiling” of sorts almost to nothingness, and then I restart. Because at core, I do believe that I am a writer and a speaker. I always dreamed about having my own business where I could read, and write and talk. This is my journey from aspiration to reality. Thought provoking as always Dan 🙂
What was the article you wrote that brought you to that company in Ireland? Can we get the link?
I don’t remember. It probably wouldn’t mean much to lots of people but timing seems important. It hit them at the right time and met an immediate need.
I love this!! You let your natural strengths lead you to where you are today in the most organic way. If I had to describe with imagery, I see a gently flowing river but with just enough turbulence to ensure the river’s path is mostly its own.
Note: A hermit’s life will always look appealing to me!! : )
Wonderful post today!Thank you
Dan, this was particularly awesome today! Hope all is well.
Just for the record…
You’ve had a HUGE impact on my leadership, on my character and on my vision.
Thank you sir. Keep up the great work…
(P.S.: and being a part-time hermit is always an option!)
Awesome reminder that everyone’s path is unique and to keep our eyes open :).
Wonderful story Dan. I always wanted a creative life. Got it in leadership and in the fine arts too. Love your introvert discussion. Totally identifiable as I love public speaking but am very introverted. Thanks for helping me reflect and learn along the way. I’m constantly sharing your link. I Retired from executive life before Thanksgiving. Now arts and family are the focus. Cheers.