1. What did or does starting look like for you?
For me, starting isn't so much about looking at something you've been too timid or shy to tackle, but more so, transparently looking at yourself and allowing for a fully beautiful and magnificent event to transpire. It's an amazing feeling to look at yourself and wholly realize you do have the capability to accomplish whatever you want. That realization often times starts with me understanding that I really am not going into a new adventure alone. There are so many friends and family, who given the chance, want to support you! The first task of that transparent peek into yourself is allowing those you love, to actually love you and bring to the table their own God given gifts and resources.
Starting anything to me means having a nice inward look, because the closer you look at those walls you've built, the more you realize there is a specific person already in your life that has the frame of mind to help move beyond that wall, all the while teaching you something new.
2. How did you know you needed to start?
I knew I needed to start because I knew that if I didn't, I'd burn myself out as I'd done in the past. There's not much worse for me than traveling between seasons only to know that once 10 years flies by, I'll have only grown in material wealth. I desire so much more than things. I crave longstanding, time tested, laughter filled, experiences. I want to be able to give others hope and joy, and I personally don't believe I would be able to do that winding through life, one flame out to the next.
3. Looking back, what struggle are you most grateful for?
In college I was forced to take a year off for financial reasons. I went back home to Chicago to get a couple jobs, work my butt off, and return to school in Colorado. That whole year though, between being a truck driver during the day and a bar-back at night, I worked 70-75 hours a week for 14 months. There was very little sleep, but there was a lot of time spent with my parents. Coming back to Colorado after that year, all I could make of that year was that it was extremely difficult and tiresome, but now I realize I was still too close to that year to see its benefit.
A mere 7 months after returning to Colorado, my dad was diagnosed with Stage 4 Lung Cancer. Terminal. He passed away 10 months after his diagnosis. That year off may have been a struggle, but it allowed for so much laughter, fun, family, and just time well spent with my dad. Having that year off with my parents really did teach me a lot, and what he passed on to me is still ingrained in me. His tenacity is what allows me to continually pursue life to the best of my ability.
4. What’s one resource you would share with someone who is wanting to start?
Failing and being completely ok with it. Just because you fail does not mean what you're pursuing is over. Life is a constant process of refinement and if you don't allow yourself to fail, you won't allow yourself an honest START. Allowing yourself to fail continually builds your foundation and refines the vision as you move up. Look at the pyramids! They would crumble under the weight and pressure of everything if built upside down. With the solid foundation at the bottom though, it allows the pyramid to taper upwards, all moving to the pinnacle at the top. Allowing yourself to fail lets you refine the vision upwards, giving the understanding that there is enough experience "below" you to look up and realize you're making progress.