Viewing entries tagged
life

It is never too late.

It is never too late.

It's never too late to show up for your own life. When people tell you that you are too old, too slow, too far behind, or too late, ignore them.

An Important Post

An Important Post

I've been wanting to write this post for quite some time. A couple of weeks ago the right opportunity presented itself. 

It's become the most-read post on blog this year. 

I can't tell you how gratifying it is to integrate professional goals and personal needs. One of the four thousand things I love about Plenty.

You look great...

You look great...

Winter Storm Linus.

... it's been a while. Great to see you again.

I've just completed my every-so-often retool of this blog. There are a couple of reasons I've not been here for a while.

One, we've been getting the Plenty blog up and running. That's taken time and energy. Not grumbling about that, by the way, because the process has been fulfilling and fun, but it has taken my time and attention. The Plenty site is now running like a top. 

Two, I needed some time to figure out what I even wanted or needed this for. With Plenty's blog, which showcases so many interesting ideas about fundraising and analytics and social change, why do I need anything else?

I guess the basic reason is built into the idea of Plenty itself -- we are, all of us, more than just the sum of our work activities. As important as my work is to me, as much as is woven into the fabric of who I am, there are ideas and rambles and thoughts in my head that don't have much to do with Plenty. My kids, my family, my personal interests, or even, pictures about the weather.

So, welcome back. 

Cross your bridges.

Cross your bridges.

We've all learned not to burn our bridges as we make friends, build relationships, pursue our careers, and live our lives.

I've recently learned that this concept goes all the way back to ancient China, and specifically to Miu-King, a soldier and earl, who burnt his boats as he invaded Tsin to ensure the only options for himself (and his relectant troops) were victory or death. We see this concept again in the famous story of Julius Caesar crossing the Rubicon. Caesar led his army over the Rubicon River, and saying "The die is cast," sealed his fate (and again, the fate of those around him) to one of only two options. 

As new languages emerged and people spread across the globe, the allegory evolved, and the old world idea of "burning one's boats" became in America "burning one's bridges." And something else happened, too. Apparently as we've traveled through time we've gotten more willing to hedge our bets, and the idea of burning one's boats has transitioned from a statement of determination to a warning against hemming oneself in to only a few choices.

I've burned my share of bridges, some on purpose and some accidentally, and I have to say I think I've regretted it each time. As you look at the pile of smoldering ash you think, "Well, that could have gone better. Now I'll have to find another way around." And sometimes there's no short way back. Sometimes you've got to tighten up the pack and prepare for a long hike.

At the same time, as I consider my own life and as I talk to people around me I've realized that we often take the advice "not to burn our bridges" as an excuse not to cross any bridges at all.  And without knowing who you are or anything about you, I can tell you that is the wrong advice for you.

I know this to be true: We are presented with opportunities and it is our test in life to take them. The bridge in front of you leads to something different, and possibly harder, but it is worth walking across. You don't have to drop a match once you get to the other side; leave the lighter fluid in your pocket. But you should go ahead and make the crossing. There's something new on the other side of the ravine. You've been on this side long enough.