I’ve decided that trying to reduce 30 years of a man’s work into four paragraphs is like trying to convey anything of importance via Twitter. Rashard Mendenhall found out recently that 140 characters are just enough to get him misunderstood.
Let me highly recommend the latest book I just finished, titled The Culture Code, particularly if you are the nurturer of a dream or idea that you are hoping will someday become a physical reality. I resounded with it on many levels, but at its most important, I take away the thought that dreams are what our country was built upon, and the ability to chase those dreams is one thing that makes the culture of America unique and great.
I’ve had the good fortune to chase a dream, one that I can trace its inception back 16 years ago. It has been a difficult journey seeing it come to fruition. There have been good days and bad days. There have been seasons that felt like long stretches of wandering in the desert, and moments of elation that I could not even begin to describe.
We are a country of dreamers, but I would not go so far to say that every person should feel required to have one that they are trying to chase. I do think that a phrase such as “follow your dreams” can become cliché and meaningless as easily as others akin to it, like “think outside the box” or “take it to a new level.” The more it gets thrown around as a slogan, the less power it contains. This is the nature of words. They must always be reviewed and redefined in order to understand their meaning.
If my voice has legs, I hope that it will find the path to those who have an idea festering inside like a pesky splinter on the ball of the foot. Everywhere you step, you feel it under the skin and can carry on despite it, but eventually will have to stop and address it. Your dream is your offspring. It is under your stewardship, your watch and care. It contains your fingerprints and your DNA. It is as distinctive as you are. And like a child, it needs you to parent it, direct it and help it grow up. Dreams, like children, will have an indelible imprint on your life if you choose to birth one. It does not exist to take care of you, but you are to be its guardian.