At the start of the new year, the topic of “vision” is always top of mind. This year, personally, aside from vowing to lose the extra pandemic/quarantine weight, last week I shared with you the new vision statement I wrote for my company (“To bring greater peace and joy to the world by helping more people feel heard and understood,”), and today I've set aside time to make my annual vision board for the year ahead. But visions start much earlier than this.
As kids we have visions of what we want to be when we grow up — usually professions that come with easily understood titles like doctor, teacher, baseball player or astronaut, or we just want to be like mommy or daddy.
My four-year-old is currently obsessed with our neighbourhood trash and recycling trucks, racing to the door with Pavlovian-style reflexes when he hears them rumbling up the road, and the guys on the trucks always look for his face in the door, rewarding his loyalty by honking the horn for him every time to his great delight. I'm pretty sure he thinks they have the best job in the world.
My 18-year-old is starting to create a different vision, setting the course for his future as college acceptance letters are starting to come in. A couple of months ago he asked me, “Did you always know this was what you wanted to do for a living?” But given how much the world has changed since I was 18, all I could do was confess: “Sweetheart, I didn't even know what I do now was a THING until someone offered to pay me to do it!”
To encourage him to be open to all sorts of possibilities, last week I shared with him the link to the 60 Minutes piece with Justice Defenders director general Alexander McLean, as an example of how people can make a real and positive difference, regardless of what they study. “You worked with them?” my son asked, after watching the clip.
I said yes, and showed him where Alexander was also a guest on the podcast — at which point he saw other recent episodes with guests like David Cohen (he didn't know David but certainly knew Comcast), and Janet Salazar (didn't know Janet but definitely knows what the UN is) and more.
He was pensive for a moment, then said (almost more to himself than to me), “Your job is really cool.”
I smiled, in part because I couldn't have agreed more (I *love* what I do) and I hope it inspired him to dream big, be open, and discover a career path that brings him just as much fulfillment.
But I also smiled because I am so grateful to all of my guests for helping me bring that inspiration to my own family, and I hope to you as well.
Speaking of both the college experience and amazing podcast guests, this week on Speaking to Influence my guest is Tom DeBiase, Senior Director in Capital One's Cyber Department where he leads the Cyber Operations organization for the company.
Tom wins the prize for the guest I've known the longest: he (and his now-wife Kelly!) was one of the first people I met upon arrival at American University, where we went for undergrad, as residents on the same dorm floor.
Both of our careers have gone in much different directions than our original visions at the ripe-old-age of 18, and it was great to reconnect with him and hear some of his stories.
Don't forget that everyone on my mailing list receives an exclusive discount of 20% off when you use the promo code NYNVY21 when signing up for the course.
What's YOUR vision for 2021? I hope you'll share it with me in return!
Here's to your success,