Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Use Ambition Wisely

My dad and I often had conversations about goals—mainly because I often talked about the need to set new ones. The last time we had this discussion my dad told me that he set three goals in his life: graduate from college, get married, and have children.

I have always been ambitious. I imagined myself doing amazing things. In class I would sit next to one of my closest friends—another ambition addict—and talk about life post-high school. I will spare you the details, but please believe that our discussions were fabulous.

Ambition is good if it encourages forward movement. It is not intended to dishearten you or lead you to feelings of inadequacy or apathy. I will always encourage people to set goals and dream dreams, but it’s also necessary to maintain balance. When we only prepare ourselves for the next phase we are not present. When we incessantly reach for more we may fail to appreciate what is directly in front of us. When we constantly chase we never renew.

Being ambitious has led me to wonderful and fulfilling life experiences, yet one of the many things that my dad taught me is that some of us are not chasers. Some of us know exactly what we want out of life and seek it out early. My dad was not a chaser. He fulfilled the goals he set for himself and spent the last thirty years of his life enjoying what resulted from his hard work. My dad set his goals, achieved them, and lived a life that not only he loved, but everyone who knew him admired. I will always be grateful to my dad for teaching me to use ambition wisely.

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