October 27, 2013 at 11:15 pm , by Nick Shell
2 years, 11 months.
Every once in a while, I try to take a break from narrating and bookmarking your life, and instead I like to share some advice on life, based on what I, as your dad, am experiencing.
Here is one of those things I especially want you to remember from me:
You’re not entitled to much in this life.
See, I am a child of the Eighties. Born in 1981, I am the firstborn of Generation Y.
Growing up, I was told by everyone, including every adult I knew, that I could do and become anything I dreamed of and put my heart into.
And I bought it. After all, I heard it all the time!
Yes, I do indeed believe that you, my son, can do and become anything you dream of.
But at the same time, I don’t want you taking that as simply as I did.
Because then there’s a chance your dreams will remain dreams, if you do. There’s a chance you may believe that making dreams come true is actually easier than it is.
It’s not easy.
I had to work very hard (and very smart) to get where I am in life.
But I admit, something that life has taught me, especially since joining the career world nearly a decade ago, is that basically, I’m entitled to… not a lot.
I used to believe I deserved certain things in life. I believed that because (at least in my own mind) I’m a “good person,” that meant I would be the automatic recipient of a somewhat easier path to my definition of success.
It has only been in recent years that I fully realized and accepted this is not so easily the case. Sure, I’m special, as every person is, but as far as being entitled to things in life because of it, I’ve found more of the opposite to be true.
Because if everyone is special, then it takes a lot more work to prove that you, as an individual, really are that special. (Hence the concept behind American Idol.)
So I had to lower my expectations on certain things in life. That happened by me nixing the belief that I am entitled to anything.
In fact, what exactly am I entitled to? That’s a deep thought- and right now, I honestly don’t know the answer.
Life is challenging. But as long as I am here in this life, you will have me not only rooting you on, but being that (sometimes annoying) person to also show you the fundamentals on how to make your dreams come true.
Based on what I know, it has a lot to do with capitalizing on what you’re already best at, while at the same time overcoming the challenges (and fears) of your weaknesses and not letting them be the reason you don’t get what you want in life.
I also know a lot of success in life has to do with money management, not simply making money: It’s crucial to become debt-free, then save and invest your money for the rest of your life.
You will always be hearing me preach this lesson to you because it was only this past July that our family worked our way out of over $58,000 of debt, now being able to save our money; and in the future, to be able to start investing it.
So that’s what you’ve got ahead of you, a life of hard (and smart) work.
You’re not entitled to much in this life, except… my direction and encouragement on how to work for dreams, not wait on or expect them.
You’re entitled to me passionately supporting your dreams, but you’re the one in the driver’s seat. I’m just reading the GPS to you.
You’re entitled to my love and support. I know that much.