Live long. You have gathered wisdom unique to yourself,
and the people still in darkness need the light you have.
(Ming-Dao Deng, The Lunar Tao: Meditations in Harmony with the Seasons)
I am writing this post from my floating office, a pontoon boat my wife and I named The Happy Living. This moment is a dream come true.
The last ninety days have been a whirlwind. I sold a company I spent the past ten years building. I launched a new business. My ten-year-old daughter earned her black belt in Taekwondo. And, I moved my family from Arizona to North Carolina.
Reaching this dream brings many different emotions – gratitude for my good fortune, joy for my achievements, and relief for overcoming challenges. There is also excitement, anxiety, and fear for where I am, and where I am heading.
I am not just starting the next chapter of my life, I am beginning a whole new book.
My journey to this moment began ten years ago. I had a serious disagreement with my employer regarding the direction of the industry and our company’s future. Colleagues warned that I was pushing too hard, but I took a stand on principle knowing the consequences could be severe. They were… I was fired.
That period of discontent and distress turned out to be a blessing, although it took time to realize. The months that followed were full of worry and long, restless days. But less than a year after losing my job I was leading a start-up company in an unfamiliar industry.
The next ten years were both challenging and fulfilling. Every day felt like a business crash-course. I learned new skills, met new people, and traveled the world. The company overcame challenges, adapted strategies, and developed products to serve our clients’ evolving needs.
In May of this year, I concluded a ten-year adventure in the global trade industry with my companies, CustomsInfo and Global Data Mining. It was a great run and a lot of fun. I met many interesting professionals and made some lasting friendships along the way. I will always be grateful for the lessons I learned about growing a business, along with the valuable experiences I gained in the process.
Now as I begin the next book of my life, I am faced with a pile of blank pages.
It was during a recent visit with an old high school friend that I realized how I want to fill them. During our conversation, my friend made several references to our “glory days” being behind us. At 53 years of age, I could not disagree more! I believe a better self is always possibletoday, every day, for the rest of our lives.
So here I am, sitting in my floating office, beginning my next grand adventure. I am guided by our simple mission: to improve the health and wellbeing of the world, one person at a time.
I hope you will join me.
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