It Takes Courage to Use Time Wisely

Cumulatively, I’ve been serving for three years, and it all started with me working at an Italian restaurant. Then I worked at a restaurant where the breakfast menu was so popular that there was a line out the door in the morning. I’m currently a server part-time at a sports bar.

In total, I’ve spent roughly 1,620 hours serving people greasy eggs, bacon, burgers, pasta, pizza, and salad doused in sugar-filled dressings.

At what cost was I doing this? In other words, why did I choose to spend my time within a serving job?
To pay off car mechanic bills because they were necessary tune-ups my vehicle needed to keep going and they were super expensive.

My car is now is good shape, and as of May 2016, I own it.

But I spent 1,620 hours of time serving. That’s a lot of hours.

Within those hours, I’ve made huge strides to get on the radar’s of individuals who I want in my inner circle to get to where I want to be. I’ve also had to audit this list multiple times – in other words do research.

I’ve asked questions that came at a price that’s required me to fly halfway across the country three times and approach certain individuals with a pounding heart and sweaty palms.

The first time I made the trip cross-country, I defined what “community” meant to me (July 12, 2014), and finding out why that was so important was a first step that many people don’t take. Secretly, I had no idea the life lesson I was going to learn. From there, the next roadblock was knowing why I was drawn to the community of my choice. I kept asking myself, “why do I keep showing up and putting so much energy into this?” because multiple times, the effort seemed to be going nowhere. It would take another 719 days from that July day for me to answer that question even though there were several at-bats of me coming up with multiple unsatisfying answers that I knew weren’t the final answer. But I figured it out and for me, that was important.

I need real meaning in life. That’s the way I am and the way I will always be.

Now that I’ve found my own answer, I’ve had genuine conversations with my inner circle. Within those 719 days (from that July day), I made a choice in mid-October 2015 to go back to college for additional education. But this time, I had a plan for my continued education (I didn’t have a plan when I was studying for my bachelors degree). I sent a message out to the universe and one person told me, “here’s what I would do if I was you and why.” That advice, so far, has saved me $5,500 and counting.

Why does the continued education matter? Because I want to work for my favorite band eventually. Yes, the band and their management are now part of my inner circle. In fact, I’ve already talked directly to one band member about where I can add value, but it’s a work-in-progress and will be for a little while longer.

Until then, I have another curveball that I didn’t think about it until literally 2 pm on Sunday, July 31.

I have a new adventure that will help me get the work experience I need and I also just started a new serving gig that fits my food lifestyle better. Yup, I took a new serving job. But with school starting again soon, time is in question.

One full-time and part-time job, plus school full-time.

Time. We all have plenty of it.

It’s all about how you spend it.

I’m reflecting briefly on the 1,620 hours— those three years.

For me, the future is all about investing at this point — in myself. Be your own investor and prove to yourself why you’re worth it.

Stay focused. Be a postage stamp.

I’ve learned two massive lessons in the past three years:
1. The more time you spend focused on your inner circle, community and doing what you love, the more you’ll realize how all three can work together and you can do what you love for a living.
2. It takes courage to be yourself, but it’s even harder to spell out the WHY for yourself so you can become invaluable to the work that you were born to do.

You’ve got one shot for every at-bat you take. 
“Words are sacred. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you nudge the world a little.” 
Define each at-bat the best you can and use your words and time wisely.

We are all in the middle of in between of becoming who we could be, but first we must try.

Stand, but don’t stay in the middle,