In speaking with a good friend and mentor recently, a discussion came up that turned into a concept which I want to share. The questions: What do we do with new opportunities? What will you do with them? What have you done in the past? What do you base your decisions on?
Opportunities are presented with grace by people who may mean well, but the question to ask before accepting any of these is, “Does it fit in with my vision?”
By “vision” I mean that you have identified who you are (mostly) and where you are going (mostly). Life is a moving pathway and we know that changes affect our direction and goals. However, in my line of work (music and speaking), I receive opportunities that can influence the direction of my life.
So, back to my mentor…
I feel that the power of observation is key when you are being mentored by someone. At times, you may not even know that you receiving a lesson in simply watching the behavior and reactions of people. It’s my mentor who reiterated the importance of opportunity and vision correlating. My view is that opportunity can be like well-wrapped gifts one receives at a white elephant party. Some may be gift cards and movie tickets, others could be dust gatherers and time wasters. The trick is to try and figure out which gift has value. Some people may find value in something you may not think is worth it; but more often than not, there are more people than good gifts.
Opportunity is similar. People present you with things that may be gainful for them and even detrimental to you. These “gifts” can look so good and are dressed really nicely. Many times, I made the wrong decision and accepted something just because it was easy. It may have ended fitting in with my vision, but only by chance. If it didn’t, the realization was heartbreaking. Making these errors still make me wonder how much time I have wasted not fulfilling my purpose.
In my journey, I align myself with principles of service to others: whether I do it by music or speaking or whatever means I choose, that is my vision. In my life, accepting opportunities has much to do with who I am in God. This is important because I do not want to end up with many white elephants decorating the mantle of my life’s journey. I don’t think you do, either! So my prayer for you is that you find an opportunity to embrace who you are and use wisdom in support your vision. Dream Big!
Best to you!