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Well, here we are. Monday, November 19th, 2012.
It’s the week of Thanksgiving here in the United States. And this week begins the official holiday season in my mind. Today I am flying from Toronto to Kansas City to travel to my hometown of Lawrence, KS to be with my parents.
I can remember leaving Lawrence about 11 years ago with stars in my eyes headed towards Los Angeles. I thought I was going to make it big out in Hollywood as an UBER successful music guy, like a straight version of David Geffen. I imagined myself being rich, famous and most importantly – powerful.
At the time, I thought it was an awesome dream. A kid from a small town in Kansas arrives in Hollywood and takes it over by storm to become the greatest success the town had ever seen. I also wanted to fly back to my 10-year reunion in a helicopter to show the kids how rich and powerful I had become.
What happened instead?
A quick rise to the top of the music business, followed by a lightning fast descent into the depths of addiction and recovery. And on the day of my 10-year reunion I was broke, and couch surfing and didn’t even have enough money to buy a ticket home, let alone arrive in my own helicopter.
It’s safe to say that things didn’t work out the way that I wanted them to. And from the perspective of time looking back, I am grateful for this. I left Kansas 11 years ago with ambition and insecurity. And now what I have is heartfelt desire and a confidence that when I am of service, miracles happen.
My old dream was self-centered; my new dream is service oriented. And the baseline of this sounds cheesy, but it is gratitude. That’s right. Simple gratitude. When I find that I focus on what I’m grateful for, the things I already have, the glorious and healthy body in which I reside, life opens. Problems turn into challenges and the crazy driver on the road turns into a friend who is stressed out right now.
My youthful ambition was naive in that I did not know my own power and I lived my life as “other defined”. Meaning that I wanted power because I didn’t think I had any and I wanted it so that others would think highly of me.
Now, I see the power one person can make in life and know that this power is harnessed not through ego-based action, but through heartfelt service and contribution. Gratitude for what I have makes it easier to bring more of it from within into life. When I know that I am lacking nothing, it is easier to serve, easier to give and easier to add value to the lives of other people.
Have you ever had an ego dream transform into a spiritual calling? I’m curious….
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