.I admire the passion Steve Jobs had to achieve his vision of changing the world of communications. The speech he gave at Stanford after having been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer impressed me.
Partial quote from his 2005 Stanford Commencement Address:
“When I was 17, I read a quote that went something like: “If you live each day as if it was your last, someday you’ll most certainly be right.” It made an impression on me, and since then, for the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: “If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?” And whenever the answer has been “No” for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.
Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything — all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure — these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.”
In 1991 in my session with Mary Jo McCabe, a spiritual intuitive, she said the following to me, “You have come in this world to be joyful in your own ego, to give yourself enthusiasm and in doing that you will bring enthusiasm to others. As a soul you need a lot of pastures in which to graze from. You’re always going to want to stir new interests.” These words were a confirmation and encouraged me to continue to what I am doing and that is to follow my passion for living life to the fullest.
I am grateful my wife supports me in many of my passions but am grateful she also helps me balance my enthusiasm. If she were not as “reasonable” as she is I would have burned the candle at both ends and would not be enjoying retirement.
In our first years of marriage we moved from an 850 sq. ft. double I owned to buying a 1200 sq. ft. house then to the current house we built and are living in today. A few months after we settled into our new house I told my wife we needed to look for another piece of property so we could build a larger house. At that time my passion was real estate investment property.
When we were married five years, we experienced a Marriage Encounter weekend. We were selected to go to New York to be trained as a team couple. Within a three-week period we were presenting talks and offering the weekends to others. My passion shifted from real estate to “changing the world” through this weekend experience designed to make good marriages better.
This was a five-year all absorbing commitment. Our children spent many weekends with couples working with us. When our third child was born we knew it was time to start thinking about making some changes in our commitments. We were approached to offer a Communications Course at a local Catholic high school and found that to be a manageable commitment for a few years. During this time we also got involved in marriage preparation in our parish. This was an intense period in our lives. We were extremely passionate about what we were doing and made friendships that we still cherish today.
One passion led to another. In my career I developed a creative marketing program while working in a very competitive commodity industry. We also started a wellness business and have maintained that business for 35 years. I am now living my passion in retirement by being connected with a wonderful group called the Good Timers, young seniors eager to live life to the fullest.
I have always been passionate about everything I approach in life. This tremendous drive has afforded me multiple resources in my tool box. That’s why I feel so blessed having my Positive Pops blog and a growing following of people interested in what I have to share with them.
As I was getting ready to release this posting I read this article in the Clarion Herald that is very touching. It also supports the message of living life with passion regardless of the obstacles that may arise.
“Relentlessly seek your purpose,” Steve Gleason emotionally told a crowd June 18 at Dominican High School as he spoke about his faith and life with ALS. He said many great words of wisdom but to paraphrase a few “in the beginning stages, I certainly prayed to be healed.” Then he later stated “Most importantly, I enjoy my life, I pray for my daily bread, my strength, and ingenuity to continue living the life I love--my life with purpose.” His days may be numbered but his passion for life is motivating others regardless of their disabilities to live out their passion.
Gleason played for the New Orleans Saints and is most famously known for blocking Atlanta Falcons punt for a touchdown during the first football game in the restored Superdome after hurricane Katrina. I was at that game and will never forget the energy level that was in the stadium when this happened.
Today you may want to write down three things you have a passion to achieve in your life. I have done this time and again throughout my life. That practice keeps me focused and allows me to have a life of abundance in our sunset years. I do believe it is often a blindfold passion to make things happen and they do!