All Keyed Up !!

When’s the last time you had an event truly shape or change your life?  I know that we all have these types of events and once they occur you need to decide how you are going to respond.

Last week I experienced an event that truly changed my life !!

I just returned from Sea Base which is a national Boy Scout camp located in the Florida Keys. The past week was spent doing everything from kayaking in the Gulf of Mexico to swimming off a boat in 600 feet of water in the Gulf Stream !!  If I wrote the post on every amazing activity I experienced, it would be too long to read.

Key West Southernmost PointI spent the week with six phenomenal young men, including my son and another dad from the Troop.  Two other dads traveled with us and hung out on vacation while we experienced the adventures of Sea Base.  Here we all are at the Southernmost Point in the US in Key West !!

It’s hard to capture the emotions that happened throughout the week because every day brought something unique and new to each of us.  At the beginning of the week there is an “adult meeting” to explain what was going to happen.  The point that struck me was when the Camp Commissioner said, “There will be things this week that challenge you.  I encourage you to take a risk and stretch yourself.  When you do, you’ll see you have the ability to do more than you think.  Also, your boys will see that you are involved and will want to join in with you.”

That’s when the life changing moment happened.  Mind you, this was on the 1st day of the week !!

How often do we not heed this advice in our work as HR professionals?  This wasn’t someone throwing down a gauntlet.  It was someone who gave encouragement with context.  He laid down the opportunity, explained the potential for success and failure and how that opportunity would be a model for others.

I was on fire after that !!  It was the first week where EVERY single day was positive from start to finish !!  I mean it.  EVERY SINGLE MOMENT !!  There were incredible challenges that we faced both physically like being in the ocean as well as living on an out island that was more like Survivor than anything I’ve ever seen.  Throughout each day there was constant laughter and an incredible bond with the staff as well as the chance to do things with the boys that we never dreamt of doing before with ease !!

Several people bemoaned when I came back – “Oh, now you HAVE to go BACK to work !!”  Are you kidding ??

I GET to return to a place where more great people are looking for (1) encouragement with context who (2) want to take risks to (3) succeed or fail and I get to (4) model it myself for others.

I’m keyed up (aka as Geeked !!)  Sea Base took off the filters, edges, doubt and frustration with things that lay before me.  I’m a better person for stretching this week and I hope you do the same !!

4 thoughts on “All Keyed Up !!”

  1. I’m really glad that you enjoyed your time in the Keys. I have to admit, when it was raining, which was most of the time last week, I was a bit worried for you guys.

    I’m also a bit jealous that you got to spend some time in paradise. The Keys are a really special place for several of us here in South Florida. Like Jimmy Buffet wrote several years ago, the Keys have that mysticism of the Gulf Stream, The Atlantic, and Florida Bay all rolled up, sloshing about and having a strange effect on your psyche and soul.

    Now that you know the secret, you’ll be back.

  2. Steve, thanks for such a great message. Tomorrow’s a new day, and I’m ready to stretch!

  3. Steve, great energizing post. I wonder if the commitment you made to embrace the challenges and the risk created the type of atmosphere where everything became an opportunity.

    I don’t want to go through the motions of life. I don’t want to visit the Keys like a tourist. And when I throw caution out the window and commit to the challenges of living the life I was created to live, I experience a little of what you experienced.

    Glad you had a great week. You reminded me to eliminate those things where I’m going through the motions and give each minute my all. Great reminder.

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