I’m pretty excited right now, and here’s why: Later on this week I’m going to embark upon an adventure that I believe will help me achieve my ultimate goal of being able to live my life on my own terms – a life that includes lots of travel, good friends, awesome experiences and above all, copious service to others, all for the sole (soul) purpose of us (my family and I) being able to drink it all in, and relish in our version of what “The Good Life” means. So, you may be wondering just what the heck am I doing this week that will expose me to all this? It’s a great question, and one I’ll answer in a bit; but first, please bear with me as I try to explain my mission.
“Be the change you wish to see in the world” ~ Ghandi
If you are a regular reader of this blog, I hope you get a sense from it of the kind of person I’m trying to be – a person of high moral character, someone who genuinely wants to live a big, full life, full of awesome experiences and good times (and food!); someone who can be counted on to do what they say they are going to do, and whose main goal is help other people in the achievement of their own goals. If the truth is to be told, I actually write the blog as a way of holding myself accountable to certain standards and practices I believe are important for me to become that person; I figure by “putting it all out there” on the web for everyone to see, I’m making promises that are so transparent that I have no choice but to keep them, and for good reason – I want to be known as someone who “Walks Their Talk”, and who honours the commitments – big and small – that I’ve made to myself, and to other people. (I’ve also recently found another way using Alex Sheen’s remarkable “Promise Cards” – more on that here) It’s worked pretty well so far, and I’ve definitely been challenged at times to do things that weren’t always easy or pleasant, but did anyway for the sole purpose of staying true to the vision of becoming the person I want to be. And that in a (not-so-tiny) nutshell is my mission – to always be the very best person I can be, and to help others do the same.
Which brings me to my upcoming adventure; if you had a chance to read a post I wrote a few months ago entitled “The #1 Reason To Talk To Strangers” you’ll know I met a remarkable family while travelling in Peru a couple years back. (If you haven’t read it, check it out here) During my conversation that day with J.D. he told me about all his families remarkable “Twelve in Twelve” Foundation; and in turn, I told him of my goal and dream to share my own story, all in the hope it would inspire people to reach out and achieve their own goals and dreams. The conversation was insanely surreal, and unlike any I’d ever had before: Here was a family doing exactly what I dreamed of – living lives of service and travel, all on their own terms – and I had a front row seat to ask all the “What”, “Where” and “How” questions I could muster! Did I mention it was surreal?
During our conversation J.D. said that if I could ever make it down to North Carolina, I should attend one of his weekend workshops in the mountains called “The Artists Weekend” and share my story with the participants. I was blown away that this globe-trotting philanthropist whom I’d only just met liked my story enough to ask this, and can honestly say that it one of the most incredible moments I’ve ever had. A couple of hours later when the train pulled into the town, we exchanged emails and all went our separate ways, hoping to bump into each other again at Machu Picchu the next day. Fortunately we did, which was so cool because I got to see not only J.D. again, but his awesome co-founders of Twelve-in-Twelve- his sons, Jackson and Buck, who are both equally as amazing as their dad.
But here’s the thing: What I remember most about that train ride was when J.D. said “You should come to North Carolina and share your story” I replied “That would be great! I’d love to” – but also to myself said “Yes! I HAVE to do this!” And in that very moment, I made a silent promise right then and there to follow through on this commitment, and not dismiss it as courteous banter or pleasantries between fellow travellers. When I told Paula of this offer, she was equally as excited for me (As you probably know, Paula is very supportive of my chasing my dream) and said “Go for it Honey!”, supporting the whole idea of me making the trek to meet up with them again one day. And so for the past year and a bit, I’ve kept this goal of visiting the Lewis family in North Carolina and attending The Artists Weekend first and foremost in my head, with plans to achieve it sooner than later.
Well, “Sooner” has finally arrived: In fact, it’s a plane leaving Victoria at 6:45 a.m. this Thursday, putting me in N.C. at around 9.00 p.m. EST! The Artist’s Weekend begins Friday a.m. and goes through the weekend, and then after one more day with my friends The Lewis family, I’ll be back here in Victoria next Tuesday night, hopefully with a lot of stories, inspiration and motivation to take my life to the next level. And so yes, I’m excited!
I don’t have a clue what to expect from the weekend, but know that if I don’t go, I will never find out… One thing I do know is it will be an AWESOME adventure! And that’s the kind of person I want to be – someone who dares to take chances, tries new things, and isn’t afraid to “go for it” – whatever “it” looks like. I don’t want to ever say “It costs too much” (This adventure will cost around $1,500) and take a chance on missing out on life-changing opportunities for me or my family; nor do I want to be the person who replies to polite invitations to visit with “That would be great! I’d love to” whilst having no intention of following through or actually visiting the person making the offer – no way, that’s not me, and never will be. And just to make sure I keep my promises, I will keep on posting them on my blog, for the world to see and also hold me accountable to making sure I always do what I say I’m going to do. Because this I believe, is the way anyone can create and live a remarkable life; a life worth looking back on and saying “Oh yeah baby, that guy really lived!” whilst knowing that many lives were touched positively along the way.
So understanding all that is at stake by honouring my public commitment to go to N.C. for the weekend, all I can say is that I can’t wait to report back on my adventure! I’m truly looking forward to sharing all the awesome benefits and stories that come from it with everyone. Wish me luck, and please stay tuned!