What is there to gain by leaving home, going after something undiscovered, trying something new, simply putting yourself out there? My answer, friends, family, experience, memories that last a lifetime, and maybe, if I’m lucky, a job. I guess we never know what is to come when we step out the door and try something new, but no matter how big the battle or stretch, we never find out without taking that first step. A journey of a thousand miles, or in my case, three thousand miles, begins with just one step, one chance and one opportunity.
In this situation I am talking about my trip to Dallas, Texas which ended up bringing me here to Boise, Idaho where I have done exactly what I previously mentioned. I took one step, left home, put myself out there, tried something new and gained friends, “family,” experience and memories that will last a lifetime. The job is still in the making, but either way this experience has led me in the right direction and has made me a stronger person.
I, along with three other co-workers, made the trip. We took the journey to Dallas, Texas, and then to Boise, Idaho to see what we could become (thanks to Dave Sappelt for the tweet, #WhatCanUBecome). And here are our stories.
Jake Abbott left home, Chehalis, Washington and went to the 2011 Winter Meetings in Dallas, Texas knowing that he wasn’t done with school until June and the job market for that time period would be twice as competitive. One of his previous co-workers, with the Tacoma Rainiers, told him that it was the best experience and opportunity out there in the baseball industry. Jake put in 25-30 resumes and had just 4 interviews. However, out of the 4 interviews, he got the seasonal internship with YOUR Boise Hawks as the Event Operations and Marketing Coordinator. Jake is glad that he took the risk and made the journey because there would have been “what if’s” if he hadn’t. His peak of the season was simply being in the press box and seeing everyone’s hard work on display. The hard part of the journey is knowing that he might not be here post-season and he will have to go through the whole routine again. At the same time, this excites him because he will be going into it with much more experience and more defined goals. “Great things happen to those who are motivated and proactive, find the passion and chase the dream.”
Thomas Wolff moved from Modesto, California for a chance at a career in baseball. He also went to the Winter Meetings in Dallas, Texas where he took the job with YOUR Boise Hawks as a Ticket Sales Executive. Thomas moved out here on January 2 and at that point was the farthest he had ever lived from home. Thomas lived just an hour away from home when he was in college, so this was a change. “I was offered over 10 jobs, strewn across the country from Alabama to Washington, Cleveland to California. I had plenty of great options yet the Hawks were the best. The comfort of friends and family is great but sometimes you have to step out of your comfort zone, take some risks and make the move that is best for your future. Boise and the Hawks were that move.”
My story was a bit rushed. I had had a horrible two months and decided last second to go to the Winter Meetings. Going to the meetings had been my goal for a couple of years but I let my fiancé (at the time) keep me where I was. My grandfather, my best friend, passed away in October. I took it hard and went on a downward spiral for a month or so. Take it for what it’s worth, but I was in a car accident in November, my fiancé and I broke up a couple days later, and a week after that I was online signing up for the meetings. I am not telling a sob story, I am speaking about how the best possibility came from the worst situation. I put in 12 resumes and had 10 interviews. I chose YOUR Boise Hawks and moved out here 4 days after graduating college. I didn’t realize quite how far away from home I’d be but in the end I couldn’t have asked for a better learning experience. I, like Jake, have a better defined list of goals and experiences and am more than ready for the direction I am heading these days. My point being that no matter what struggle you are going through you still have to make things happen for yourself and just DO IT!
I think this idea started rolling after reading an email from my grandmother this morning. She mentioned my cousin, Kevin, who shares a love for baseball, and in his case, sports in general. “I wish some of your ambition and self-confidence would rub off, he doesn’t have the drive you have to go after what you want.” I replied by saying that everyone has it in them; it is just finding the strength to DO IT. My strength was not found in times of joy, and I didn’t always have the ambition to do something like this, this meaning packing my life up and moving 3,000 miles from home. But I found it. I encourage everyone to look deep inside and go after what they want, whether you are 10 years old or 60, or in a great or not so great situation. My co-workers will laugh, but don’t let anyone steal your sparkle! I kind of live by that!
To Kevin: Search inside for your goals and ambition and DO IT! Don’t be shy and don’t let anyone say you can’t, and when they do, turn it into a positive and keep going! Stay strong and be happy! Continue to make your mother proud. Love You!