The Journey To My Moon

We choose to go to the moon. We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win, and the others, too. ” – John F. Kennedy, September 12th, 1962

I’ve been thinking about this quote a lot lately; I even used a portion of it in a comment response to Charles on my other blog a couple of weeks ago. It’s an interesting quote in more ways than one; I’d like to talk about it for a little bit.

Last week I put out my 2011 goals for his blog and this part of my career. On my business blog I put up some goals as well. On my finance blog, instead of putting up personal goals, I put up a list of financial goals that we as a people should be looking to attain for our own comfort and well being.

Kennedy’s long term goal was for the United States to get to the moon before 1970. If he hadn’t stated that, and if it hadn’t been put out there for all to see, I doubt it would have ever happened. I mean, there was so much other stuff going on in the world; wars, disease, famine… sound familiar? There have always been major distractions that had the potential of taking everyone away from this goal, yet the goal continued, and we got to the moon.

Last week I had a post on influence where I was responding to Chris Brogan. I’m not sure if you went to read his post, but something else he said there was this: “I never set out to be influential…” I found that interesting because I wondered just how many of us ever set out in our lives to be influential. I’m obviously shooting for that now, and I’ve stated it on more than one occasion, but what about early dreams?

I always wanted to be something. When I was a little kid I wanted to be a cowboy, which is odd because I don’t like cowboy movies. When I was a young teen I wanted to be an Air Force pilot. When I went to college I wanted to learn how to be a sports announcer. When I left college I wanted to be a songwriter.

Then for a decade and a half… nothing. My career path seemed to have been laid out and I decided to just try to be the best I could be doing what I was doing. I didn’t care to try anything else, and I didn’t want to do anything else. No dreams, no visions, no goals; just work on career.

That’s not such a bad life but in a weird way it’s just automatic. It doesn’t require thought. It’s not hard at all. Yeah, there are ups and downs along the way, but you realize that nothing really matters in the end; you just do your thing and move on. There’s little passion, there’s little motivation other than just ‘being’.

In 2001 I started dreaming; I went into business for myself. I started setting goals; some I hit, some I didn’t. I can tell you that my dreams and goals in 2001 are vastly different than they are now, and yet some of them are the same. Growth is a process, no matter whether it’s in a career or whether it’s blogging or writing or anything else.

I have a friend who says she wants to see changes now; well, things just don’t work that way. To me, they don’t work any way if you don’t know what it is you want to be when you grow up. And if you don’t make plans for how to get there when you grow up, then you’re going to just age, still not grow up, and wonder what happened.

What do you want to do and be when you grow up? If you’re already grown up, what are you and what do you do? I know what I want. I want Orson Welles to walk into my office right now, pull out the standard Rich and Famous Contract, and sign that baby (how many of you remember that reference?). But it’s not going to happen that way. I’m going to have to get it done on my own. This blog is a start; who wants to come along with me on the journey to MY moon? It’ll be okay; there’s room for everyone.

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10 comments on “The Journey To My Moon

  • I see some similarity and usually this happened with people that can do a lot of things well. I believe that this is the main problem with me. I achieve high goals with my poetry, the same happened with my 3D animation and with my music. Unfortunately for me, I am loosing the buzz after I achieve success. However, I know my place and what I do the best. When I grow up, I don’t think that I ever will.

    • Mitch Mitchell says:

      Carl, I’m not sure I’ll ever grow up either. My wife might not like that, but I think it’ll suit me just fine. But I hope that I achieve some of my goals so that I’ll have more time to “play” when I get older.

    • Mitch Mitchell says:

      Ron, I can’t think of a better thing to shoot for overall. I wish you the best with it all.

  • Alex@Jocuri says:

    Hi Mitch,
    You really struck a cord with this post. I know that since I was little I wanted to grow up and become a rich man(I checked there is no such job at the unemployment office :|), but it seems that somewhere along the road I deviated from that plan a just started to settle with something more realistic.

    But some parts still remains, like having a house with a nice front lawn, with white picket fence, with a couple of cherry trees in full blossom(especially now that springtime is approaching).

    I guess that we should look for a good hotel on the Moon, because I am in. :))

    • Mitch Mitchell says:

      All right, Alex is in! 🙂 I always think about the Muppet Movie where Kermit tells Orson Welles he’d like to sign the standard “rich and famous” contract; wouldn’t it be wonderful if that really existed? But you added cherry trees to the mix; I’d have to say it’s the first time I’ve ever seen anyone ask for that.

  • Jessica Sieghart says:

    BLASTOFF! Let’s go! I have so many interests that it’s hard to decide what I ever wanted to be “when I grew up”. I can and always have worn several different hats. Normally a new year doesn’t get me going, but somehow this one did. I’m working on a list of goals to try to accomplish this year, too. I’m not a big quote person, but that Kennedy quote is one I admire a lot.

    • Mitch Mitchell says:

      Jessica’s on board as well; neat! It seems that every year I’m in business the hat I wear changes as well, but I never deviate too far from my past. But one day I’m going to hit the head on the perfect thing that’s going to help me soar, and then I’ll look towards more of the fun stuff.

  • This is really generalizing, so I don’t know how true it is, but I have the feeling that people who are extremely successful are focused on one thing. They remove almost all distractions and they work this one thing until it catches fire, and then they keep working it. The rest of us either spend our lives trying to figure out what we want to do, or we spend it hopping around from one thing to another, pulled in a hundred directions by dreams, responsibilities, and all of the interesting parts of the world. Who’s really getting the most out of life? I’m not sure.

    • Mitch Mitchell says:

      You could be right, Charles. When I’m focused on a big project that’s all I can think about. When I created the products I did, other than the book, I never stopped until they were completed. Part of me wants more of that because it knows that without having more I’m probably not going to progress as much as I want to. Focus; yup, want more of that.

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