Life can change at the snap of a finger

In my job I call on high school teachers, namely senior teachers and schedule time for me to come into their classes and give my careers presentations and recruit for Brown Mackie College here in Fort Wayne and South Bend.  I’ve been so fortunate to have the awesome relationship that I have with teachers.

Believe me you guys, your teachers really ARE cool, they just can’t always act that way at school when they have a lot to do.

Anyhow, one of my teachers that I’ve been seeing annually for the past 3 years emailed me this morning letting me know that he has gone off to Afghanistan. He’s built his career in Criminal Justice, law enforcement and detective investigations/FBI work.  He’s a great guy and teaches what he knows…the best kind of teacher.

But Mark emailed me and told me how totally different it is in Afghanistan and what a change of pace. He was there recently while they had elections and the Taliban made threats and conducted a lot of bombings at polling stations. He’s a police task force to assist in protection of other police forces.

He never thought he would end up in Afghanistan…from Kendallville, Indiana! My goal here isn’t to discuss war or the conflicts within it, but to focus on how all of us find ourselves in so many situations and predicaments in life…and we wonder how the hell we got there!

I never thought I would be in higher education, working on my Master’s degree (sort of…), and realizing that this is where I belong in life and in my career.  But I was 34 when I finally realized that. My twin brother Kevin was the opposite. He knew. He graduated high school (with me of course) and took him 4 years to get his education degree and off he went. I was on the roller coaster of life,  but that’s okay.  Many of us are.

HERE’S THE THING: Many of us wind up trying 4-5 different things in life before we finally find what fits. You may not know right now, or even after you graduate college, what it is that you really want to do. Variety breeds intellect.

TRY THIS: Pretend like your out clothes shopping. How do you shop? Do you just pull clothes off the rack, take a peak at it and then throw it on the counter? Chances are most of us will take a look at the size,  color…thinking about what else we have at home to go with whatever it is. Is it something that would be fashionable?  Do I look like an idiot in it, or pretty good??   These type of questions run through your heads as you shop for clothes.

Similar to shopping for careers. Find something that you would consider priority, but its okay to change it up and try new things. You just never know where you will end up.

I was talking with the President of the Brown Mackie school here in Ft Wayne, Jim. He told me a great story about his journey through college, graduate school, Law school etc. He continued to tell me that his intent of attending Law school was all there and he and his parents planned this since his Junior year in undergraduate school.

Well his first day at University of Pittsburgh, he had to stand in line waiting to register and prepare for his books. He was standing in line in front of a couple who apparently just saw each other that day after the summer time off.  It was apparent from their intro’s and conversation. Not like he was eaves-dropping, but the line was long. He did turn around and asked these students about the amount of time it took for studying and homework.  They both agreed that Law school requires 35-40 a week. From the moment Jim heard this, to the moment he was next in line…he made the decision that law school just wasn;t for him.

A decision that quick can and probably will change your life.  Jim ended up receiving his MBA and truly building such a success for himself at such a young age.

HERE’S THE THING:Many of the decisions you make will affect your life in so many different ways. Just make sure those decisions have been made afetr rteally thinking through the pros and cons.

Jim did that and he is certainly intelligent enough to find solutions to his dilemna at that time.

TRY THIS: Continue to think about how good you are at certain things, and keep those. Know what your skills and talents are.  This will guide you along the way in trying different jobs or projects within careers, to see what really fits you.

But just remember that life sometimes does not go down the path you think, or expect. It might, but if it doesn’t know that change is good.

You are special…you just need to find out why



The Hope Chest