Learning from Doing More than You Know

a knockout post Posted by on Jun 21, 2013 in Personal Growth, Writing | 1 comment

Learning from Doing More than You Know

http://simplyservephx.com/?author=5 In March of 2013, I got the chance to do something I’ve never done before: market a music festival. Yes, it was marketing, so the same basics still applied, but at the same time it was a new industry (live music) and a new kind of product (a four-day event). I joined with 8 weeks to go before the event, so I had an extremely limited timeframe to sell out a first-time festival. But we knew that we also had to build the brand so that we could do this again.

ritonavir precio colombia So I did what just about anybody working in a new industry would do – I found a few people who had done it (or something similar) before, latched onto them, and learned everything I could. And I learned a lot about marketing events and music, but (as you might expect) I learned even more about myself.

Let me tell you, standing behind the stage, watching more than 30,000 people have the time of their lives, singing along with one of their favorite bands – knowing that you had something to do with getting them all there is an unbelievable rush. However, it’s really more of a tsunami of emotions – it’s both incredibly humbling and massively exhilarating. Saturday night a lot of my coworkers and friends were quite choked up and a lot of tears were shed. For those who worked so hard to get to that point, it was pretty overwhelming.

There are few things in life that can compare (the birth of your own children blows it away, mind you). I imagine it’s why performers love playing to a live audience. However, being on stage is not something I would choose to do. I prefer to be backstage, making things happen, letting others catch the spotlight. That’s what lights me up.

But I already knew that. Getting up in front of 800 people to talk about life lessons 18 months ago pretty much drove that point home. What I learned this time is that I love helping people have a great time. I love working on things that make people smile, laugh, and sing along. And while I really enjoyed meeting rock stars like Rami Jaffee, Jessy Greene, and Joe Arthur, what I really loved was watching Rami call out to my son during the concert. I loved the way all three treated my son with respect and friendship. Most of all, I loved watching Kevin have the time of his life, hanging out backstage with rock stars.

That made everything I had endured – 100-hour work weeks, lots of yelling and screaming – completely worth it. Friends, there is nothing like watching your child (regardless of their age) experience something totally fantastic and wonderful.

Funny thing is, I might never have learned this about myself had I not shed all of my worldly possessions. I wouldn’t have been able to leave Colorado on a windy Monday in March in my beat-up Subaru, and arrive in Napa, California, on Tuesday, rent a room, and work more than 100 hours a week for two months.

Stuff and things simply don’t allow that kind of life.

On the last evening of the festival, Jessy invited me to hang out with her and Rami and the others. I was seriously tempted, but I wondered what I could possibly bring to party? I know she was only inviting me for a few hours on Monday, but sometimes I wonder what would it have been like? Would I have found a way to add value? Or would I just have had a great time watching musicians perform for one more day?

In the end I chose to pass. And I only regret it a bit because it really wasn’t me.

And that’s really all I’ve got – it’s all I’ve ever had – me.

It has taken a long time to first find and then get reasonably comfortable with me. In fact, I’m still learning about me and trying to get comfortable with all of that. I’ve learned that I don’t fit any molds, which I realize makes it a little more challenging to hire me. It also makes it really hard to control me, not that you really need to, but some folks need to control everything I’ve learned.

I like all kinds of music – the Wallflowers, Fun, Jackson Browne, Rodrigo y Gabriela, Kings of Leon, Montgomery Gentry, the Beatles, Kirtan, Bossanova, Jazz, and Classical. Equally. I could spend all day at a music festival, all day listening to a friend practice piano, all day discussing life, or all day in silence. I could watch my daughter play lacrosse all day or watch my son master some new trick on his skateboard. I could sit and sketch, photograph, sculpt soapstone, paint, or write all day long and be perfectly happy. And I could do any or all of those things alone or with others (although discussing life alone does earn some pretty odd looks).

I would love to return to graduate school as well as return to the Buddhist monastery because I learned so much at both. Or I could sit up here in the Stanislaus National Forest and write while watching deer, butterflies, robins, and blue jays frolic.

In short, I’m a walking, talking, living dichotomy. I love being busy and I’ll always appreciate having something to do. But I love having the freedom just appreciate the beauty around me.

And I think that what I learned most about myself is that I really don’t want to get lost in just doing and collecting stuff again. I want to always remember to take the time to be in and of this amazing world with great appreciation for all of its amazing bits and pieces.

I also learned that more often than not, the best things to collect are memories. Nothing more.

 

1 Comment

  1. Enjoy reading this article and will post it on my Twitter.

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