Wednesday, September 24, 2014

FFA, Despicable Me, and a purpose filled life

I think it was in a business workshop where I first learned about the aha moment. You may have heard of it, it's that moment when a lightbulb flashes on in your head and you think "Aha!". I've had many such moments and now when I do I think of Gru in the kid's movie Despicable Me when he has a great idea and, in his foreign accent, slowly says...lightbulb. If you've not seen the movie, don't be discouraged this blog will still apply to you (you are just missing out on adorable minions, some great one-liners and a solid storyline).

Last night I had such a moment. I've been working with several FFA chapters helping them to choose their new chapter officers. The chapters I've helped with have the members go through an interview process in order to be eligible to be selected.

At several of the chapter interviews, one of the interviewers has asked something along the lines of how the interviewee will get new students interested in joining FFA. To which the response is a resounding "We like to show them how fun it is."

I better admit a few things before I go much further. I am naturally a systems person. I love people and interacting but I like black and white rules and a lot of structure even better. For me, FFA was a fun place to spend time with friends but I loved some other things about it more. I loved that I was learning about how to be a young voice for agriculture and a leader. I loved the competitions, and winning them :). Most of all I just loved the idea of "Learning to do, doing to learn, earning to live, living to serve." I think once we espouse the mission we are able to fully enjoy what we are doing.

In this aha moment I thought about how this applies to every part of our lives. Currently, our world seems to be a place where everything is full of fun, benefits and handouts - all things that should make you happy. But what kind of people experience true joy? They are the people living with a purpose. They have a life mission - maybe it's not a written statement but they know what they are here for. That's different for everyone I am sure.

This probably isn't news to many of you. You knew already that those living life with a purpose are able to truly understand a passion for getting up each morning. I think I knew that before too. Sometimes I forget to share my reason for living with others. I'm not talking just verbally telling them about it but having a positive outlook, being encouraging and showing them by our actions that there's so much more to life than just seeking a false happiness.

Maybe your mission is one that you're not sure you want to share because, frankly, it's not making you happy. For those of us living fulfilled lives, let's share that passion with others by what we say and what we do. It's a two part display that must remain hinged together. Talking and walking, we can't have one without the other.


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