As some of you may know, the family and I recently spent a month in the Philippines partly as vacation, but also partly to explore the possibility of opening up an operations office there or find new talent or at the very least look for any excuse to call this trip a "business expense."
Aside from the capital city, we spent a lot of time on the lush tropical island my parents retired to, eating truly fresh and organic fruits, fish and vegetables and spending time in their beach house. (Yes, it is amazing what you can deduct as a business expense when you're an entrepreneur.)
Then one day, we headed off to some nearby mountains and I couldn't resist jumping into the bottom of a waterfall. Turned out the water was frigid and later that night I felt something amiss with my heart. After an ambulance trip to the nearest city with a modern hospital, it turned out I had atrial fibrillation. My heartbeat became irregular. Not that serious but scary nonetheless. Especially when you're on a tropical island that, despite its lushness, had only one modern hospital.
I came through it okay and recovered after a 3-day hospital stay. But it made me really think about what was truly important in my life. And what I came up with was this: my family, my health and getting lots of attention from young nursing students who live on a lush tropical island.
But seriously, I realized that what I truly want is to be passionate about what I do for a living. And for me, that's helping business owners, especially new ones, achieve their potential, grow their businesses and themselves, grow as business and community leaders.
Dave Schlueter recently wrote "Every day, millions upon millions of people are forced from their homes by a disaster called work. Work they hate." A sad truism but not an inescapable one. While it is possible to learn to love the job you have by taking responsibility for it and making a conscious decision to embrace the challenges it offers, I also believe in finding and getting the job that will give you the satisfaction and happiness you truly want. And if that job doesn't exist or is out of reach, then create it for yourself! That's what entrepreneurship is all about and why I advocate for it so enthusiastically.
You've all heard the saying "Do what you love and the money will follow" but here's one you may not have heard and one I often use when people ask me how I juggle so many things. "You always have more than enough energy for the things you WANT to do but never enough for the things you HAVE to do."
So do what you truly want. Except maybe jumping into frigid waterfalls.