Many of us have been members of organizations, maybe the Boy Scouts, maybe 4-H, or as adults something charitable like The Elks, or Lions Club, the Masons, or Red Hat Society, and in all of those organizations there are dues to pay to keep the organization moving forward with the finances to sustain and even thrive for the good of its members and others receiving benefits from the charitability of the organization. But without paying your dues, the organization fails.
For us as individuals, we have the same processes occur in our lives daily, be it at work, at home, and the pursuit of life and happiness and whatever that may look like in HD for ourselves and our big hairy audacious goals. The difference is in organizations the dues are money and very tangible to us. In life and the pursuit of happiness and goals, the dues are very intangible. You can’t buy happiness nor can you achieve goals by purchasing them. We “pay our dues” by doing dangerous work or by doing risky work. You can pay them by fitting in or you can pay them by standing out. And our lack of patience often interferes with our final outcomes or lack thereof in our “buy it now” push button society of today. You can not microwave success! It’s the 10,000-hour rule often times, taking 10,000 hours of work and grinding, “paying your dues”, to achieve your success or big hairy audacious goals. It’s not a microwave, it’s like sour dough. It takes time, we must be persistent, and more importantly, we must be patient, which is so monumental for all of us to do.
It’s not about what you know. It’s about what you want to know, as another part of “paying your dues”. Over the last few weeks, I have been teaching a good number of feedyards crews it ‘s like the “Law of the Rubber Band”, your greatest value is when you are stretched.” A rubber band is 100% useless and of zero value until we stretch it, and we have the same elasticity element to our minds, bodies, and souls. We can’t teach others to grow or take others to places they haven’t been unless we have paid our dues and gone there ourselves. I have had the humbling privilege of taking some incredible heroic feedyard managers to “places they haven’t been before “so that they may achieve higher levels of greatness and their inner potential. This last week I was continuing some people work with a young manager who is smack dab in the middle of paying his dues. He “gets it”, he understands it, but he is in the middle of learning more, growing more, and executing things he has never done, going places he has never gone, and at times this is tormenting his soul. In the middle of it, he is also being taught to respect the process, cherish it, love the painful process, as he is paying his dues and gaining extreme levels of inner greatness many never see or achieve. I left him this last week with one more lesson as his soul continues to be tormented by his “stretching”, as usual, a final handshake and the words “keep at it”, and I said, “This is going to be weird!” And reached my short arms out and gave him a big squeezing hug. And as I released, looked him square in the eyes, and said with emotion in my soul holding back tears of joy for him and my journey, “Hug your people…….it just changes things.”
Turn off your phone, your computer, your iPad, and stretch yourself in another direction to explore new ideas, new thoughts, new people. Your brain is starving for stimulation. Be patient, respect the process, and pay your dues by doing something you hate or have never done before. Do some dangerous work, and stretch yourself by taking a risk you have never taken before. Who knows, it just may take you places you have never been. One thing is for certain, if you don’t take the risk, you will never go there.