The My Solloquy blog recently published a post titled “Life-value and the third currency“. The author, in this well-written post, describes how we measure value based on money, time, and experience. While reading this post, I returned to one of my personal beliefs, “For any venture to move forward, we must have a high level of commitment”. I agree with the author that money, time, and experience are part of the equation when measuring value. However, I believe that commitment supersedes all three. Without commitment to the venture, one can have an endless supply of money and time, and years of experience, and still not find success.
The best example that I can think of to show the importance of commitment is the documentary, A Man Named Pearl. Pearl Fryar worked as an engineer at a can factor during the day. In the evenings, he started trimming the bushes on his property. This past time became a passion. His commitment became so strong that after working in the factor all day, he would come home and worked all night in his gardens. He taught himself the art of horticulture. Pearl did not have any prior experience in this field but through commitment, he became so good that he developed many gardens around his property. His work has been on display at several museums and he offers tours of his property. His commitment continues long after he retired from the factory. You can learn more about Pearl in this video.
When we commit to a venture, regardless of the available time or funds, we tend to give everything that we have to see it through. If we do not have the time, we will shift other priorities to make it available. If we do not have the money, we will get it by any legal means possible. If we do not have the experience, we will churn all available resources to gain the necessary experience, even if it means we do it for free. Knowing this, I ask myself constantly, “What am I so committed to that I would stay up all night, after working a full day, and give everything that I have to learn and become better?” To some degree, I did this while going to college but I do not believe I gave everything to the causse. So, looking beyond my education, I have not come up with anything.
It has been more than 10 years since I watched the Pearl Fryar documentary and I still use it as my litmus test. On a regular basis, I ask myself what am I overwhelmingly committed to? So, far, I do not have the answer. I am grateful for having seen the documentary and I hope that someday, if it is meant to be, I will find the thing that I am so committed to that it consumes me and I want to give it my all.
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