This past weekend, I took a last minute trip to a retailers conference. Any by last minute, I mean – I used both computer monitors at 6:30am and started scrambling to see if there was flights available, rooms available, tickets available – matching everything up and making sure I didn’t screw something up along the way. It was refreshing and fun to do spontaneity and I am forever grateful that I was able to go and learn all the things. I can’t wait to share some of the new techniques that were taught and start implementing a few amazing idea’s into the shop for customers.
However! Probably the most important thing I learned was on the way home during my last flight home. Completely exhausted and brain like mush, I did something I normally do not do mid flight – I opened a window. That’s all I did. I opened a window and then I looked out that window. It doesn’t seem very life changing or altering, but it really was.
What I saw were clouds – so many clouds. I took a picture of it because I felt like I was on top of the world. I was flying higher then everyone else and I was rocketing down the sky highway up above all the people. I went some place others didn’t get to go and I learned things that others didn’t get to learn. I sat and stared out that window for a little bit and felt so sure of myself. So much better then most. Seriously, I gave my head the highest bit of inflation than I think ever did in my life. I was a Queen.
Then my ears popped and I was able to hear the people around me a bit better. I was not alone and I was not the only one up there. There were multiple conversations going on around me at once and everyone was talking to those next to them. Some were laughing, some were have serious conversations. A few were reading and yes, there was even those like me – staring out their window or reading their book and maybe even sleeping (or jamming their eyes shut because we also happened to hit some turbulence at that time too).
We also started our descent back down to the airport and I decided to take another picture
I was still watching out the window and the view above came at me and I started thinking about the phrase ‘stay in your own lane’ and how much I don’t like it. That view showed me something under the clouds. People living in housing developments who happen to reside next to larger tracks of farms and I think maybe even an industrial park that has even more people in it. It showed me roads and paths and a maze of lanes. Some cross over and some go to a dead end and all of them connect to each other along their way.
Then the next picture came into focus through my window and it showed an entire town of people. Living in their homes, working in their business’s and trying to get through their day or evening. They travel those roads that intersect with each other and go about their daily lives exactly the same as I do. They get up in the morning, they make their breakfast and maybe rush out the door after they do their morning home routine. They go to work or take their kids to school or play with their child for a bit. Some are retail owners, like myself and some run multi national business’s like the companies who I retail for. Some may never own anything and instead choose to work for another. Or maybe they stay at home and raise their children. The possibilities of how they live their life is endless.
A few might be happy with where they are or are trying hard to succeed in what they do and excel to their fullest potential. It doesn’t really matter though because they all live on the same roads, live in the houses next to each other and in the grand scheme of billions of people on this earth – they are just one person. That’s it. Just one person. And that one person has a choice to make. They can either stay in their own lane and continue about their climbs, their struggles, their own falls or lifting moments. They can step on others or they can lift up a hand and help others. They can cause harm along the way while they try to excel for themselves or they can create help along the way for those who going through their own struggles.
Either way, they never ‘stay in their own lane’. They can’t because if they did, they wouldn’t be able to pass others and excel at what they are doing or move over just a bit to allow others to pass them because they are happy with where they are.
It was humbling to realize that we are all in it together and we can either help each and lift each other up until we each get to our very own excel moment and then we get to side step and continue helping and lifting each other up as those around us achieve their own excel moment. That at the end of the day – we are but one person out of billions. We can fly above those clouds for a little while and be kind while doing so and keep ourselves humble and helpful to others and absolutely like ourselves at the end of the day. Or we can be cut throat and cruel and hate ourselves at the end of the day.
Those choices are always ours to make and how those choices reflect on us will be the deciding factor on how others will see you. And at the end of the day – a reminder that you are but one in a billion or so people on this planet. What you do matters but only to those that interact with you and for the vast majority of us – those people only account for the smallest of fractions of the people on this planet.
My choice is to get my head out of the clouds and realize I’m not a Queen. That my extended hand to someone else will be the hand to help lift them up. Most especially if we are trying to get to the same place or perhaps, in my mind – I think they are already there. My choice is to help them stay at their excel moment or strive to get there so I can stand with them versus trying to knock them down and take their place.
I think I’ll choose to be those lights in the picture above – the one that shines on everyone else and makes sure they know they are worthy and special. The light that will make you laugh, share idea’s with you while watching or helping you excel to your point while I excel to mine. Perhaps we’ll be able to stand together because life can be very lonely if you don’t look beyond the top of the clouds you are flying over.
What will be your choice?