Love is the bottom line..

… When courage and hard work and even genuine desire to succeed is not sufficient

After 10 years of militant perserverance, the patience of a monk, and climbing the proverbial mountain from the bottom, I finally achieved what I had set out to do in the beginning of that dream.
When I got laid off in January, after the mandatory 24/48 hour recovery from the unexpected metaphorical shot to the ego (only as bad as a sharp kick to the baby maker), this didn’t feel like 2008 at all.
With a balanced dose of humility and awareness, I realized that I had climbed that mountain and its time to acknowledge and take this as much as a victory than a defeat.

I would drop into a yoga pose rather than allow the defeat part of it to frustrate myself or take it too personally.

I still am shocked with how much I was able to do, learn, thrive in the unknown and then find the peace and relaxation that comes after ever soccer game, when you have left it all on the field and not forget to honor the effort on up.

In downward dog, I sighed and felt an exhale much more like the one that comes after winning a hard fought and long soccer match. I began to notice my body was reacting with appreciation and gratitude for getting to sleep in, eat better, get back into more exercise, play some guitar and hit the mountains with a snowboard and zero fear albeit very experienced and humble there too.

There is a natural pride that wells up from the depths and begins to move into those places you used to hold fear or doubt.

working so hard and seeing the fruit of that labor, with spirited but but well rooted confidence which springs up from within, not just from an external acknowledgement or “bonus” as much as we all like a pat on the back and a good compensation for doing our jobs well.

In 2008, when I was laid off among the bloodiest exodus of labor any of us would like to see, I didnt yet get enough experience or practice. Then, I found anger and anxiety and “#{^}*}+}£}*! What to do now?”

This time I think I found the first real tears of joy once I got to digest it a bit, get a few nights good sleep, eat well and exercise again more regularly.

I was devouring books, both leisure and academic with the same tenacity I had out there on a soccer field especially in college ball. Ready to charge the mountain of that game’s challenges and knowing that I would fight with my fellow teammates with everything I had to find victory together because we were only able to succeed with the help of each other and the coordination as well as outright willezurmacht.

I absolutely am more confident in myself much more than before I started, but once you climb something, you need to set more goals and began with and realized it was time to dig deeper and try something completely different like helping people in the poorest yet beautiful part of the world and set my sights on Mt. Kilimanjaro. I would see the economy and the world itself larger, and broaden myself rather than just take the next job. I can tell you what this process feels like but only explain it as such because its absolutely true.

Most importantly, this may sound rhetorical but you really have to have a deeper love for the job to be at the top of your game.

Lets be clear- hard work gets you to persevere and be more patient even.. Love is what brings the non-material gratification albeit one that redeems our efforts no less.

There is a third and final component of the soul, according to a brilliant thinker and trailblazer for the rest of us. What they called “Logos” or the rational.

It’s hard to explain my career concisely, but I can tell you I worked with some of the smartest and most driven and competitive minds business has to offer. I was baptized in fire and busted my butt because I had a dream to fulfill and no one was gonna discourage me now.. I climbed that mountain.

When I had heard about Kenya, I quickly thought of Kilimanjaro, challenging conditions, helping my college build a program, which are cool and exciting.

But the fire that begins to simmer when you move it from idea to vision, from vision to dream, from dream to action… It kindles and then cracks, it can be a spirited and “appetitive” or desired action.

But when I first formed the Wall Street success idea from Auto finance customer service in a call center to Management Reporting in NYC. These both involved my hard work and desire but I fell in love with the first day I sat on a trading desk in mid-town Manhattan because it clicked right then and there. “At a bank, I would thrive HERE most! I caught the bug long before I would make much more money with this dream.

Time to elevate the expectations I have on myself, learn as much from my colleagues and the guys ahead of me, push the envelope studying after hours and dive into this dream with every bit of myself.

If I didn’t make it, I would have proven something to myself still and at least I aimed my dream well beyond my then limited perspective.

I admit that layoffs are never fun and there is always that “grass always greener” stuff that occasionally resurfaces but I have changed in this experience. I have learned and grown much more than the previous 7, workiy at a bank.

But now my sights are set on Kilimanjaro and from my value system and how I was raised, I am happy and grateful for the opportunity to climb this mountain while also investing my time and energy into the effort of reaching out to someone else and giving them a hand, metaphorically speaking.

It feels good to help people which in turn can foster and feed your heart, in addition to those other parts of the soul.

It feels good to do some good in the world, in a very direct way; and I am ready to do my best again in the slums and the nearby mountain that takes at least 3 days to summit.. Awesome

K I L I M A N J A R O

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