Late last week I received a friend request (is that what you call them?) on Linkedin. It was a former co-worker, who 14 years ago completely changed the course of my story. But first, I need to go back a little further than that.
I was hired straight out of college in my first job as a sales representative. To say I was “wet behind the ears” is a complete understatement. I was the punchline in all of the inner office jokes. If I’m really honest, often times what they found funny, hurt. They had families, mortgages and talked about things I knew nothing about. I had a steady income and expensive gadgets (which I really couldn’t afford). Those were some tough years.
Fast forward to about 14 years ago. I had now bounced around some pretty crummy occupations and received an opportunity to return to that original company. One of those former co-workers was now the boss and wanted to bring me back. That phone call and that decision changed the entire course of my family. I was the one with mortgages and a family now too. My priorities were different and thus I had a different focus when I returned to sales. Over the next few years I would experience some success which would ultimately land me in a position at “the ivory tower” (AKA – Corporate Headquarters). Until a few months ago, that is where I spread my wings and learned more than any business class would ever teach me.
All because that one man made a phone call and an offer.
Today I had lunch with that man. There’s been a lot of water (and years) under the bridge since that phone call, but I had so much to thank him for. We spent about an hour catching up, showing family pictures and talking about what we’re doing now. But I could not let this opportunity go by without saying “thank you” to this pivotal character in my life’s story. I said it like this on Facebook:
“Just had lunch with a guy that gave me the opportunity of a lifetime 14 years ago. Never forget to thank those that provided the pages on which you write your life’s story.”
Every day those around us are creating pages which we write our story upon. It could be a co-worker, friend, spouse or complete stranger. Someone extends something which changes the trajectory of that moment, that day, maybe even our lives. Have you taken a moment to thank those people? I don’t want to let time get away from me without doing so. My friend sent me a text to thank me for lunch and I shared with him what I shared with you above. His response -
“Thanks a lot! You’re making an old man cry. I’m much more sentimental than I used to be.”
Let me encourage you right now to take a minute and thank those around you that have given YOU a page to write your story on. You just never know what it might mean to them. You might even be giving them a page for their story too.