Lead or follow ~ You decide
Greg, the co-owner with his wife, Jan, of eleven, soon to be twelve, Yakima Valley McDonald's restaurants, proudly handed me one of his business cards. I was surprised to see a picture of his motor home on it. It is a beautiful 1954 Flxible Diesel Pusher bus that he and Jan have converted into a luxury coach. Greg told me that to be accepted as a member of the motorcycle traveler club with his buddies who all ride Harley-Davidson motorcycles, you first must have a luxury motor coach. The club pretty much insists that it be one of the high priced, super luxurious coaches. The way Greg put it, "no plastic." Most of the club members have a coach like those manufactured by Marathon Coach in Eugene, Oregon. Greg said that he and Jan wanted to be in the group, but they didn't want to spend a million dollars on their coach. Believe it or not, the price of a new Marathon Coach ranges from $1.5 to $2.5 million, so they decided to do something different. After scouring the country, they finally found and bought their 1954 Flxible. Theirs is one of less than fifty left in the world. When they got it home, the work really started. They completely renovated it. It is gorgeous and in many ways far more interesting, and certainly more unique, than one of the up to eighty coaches per year you can buy right off the production line.
To have such a ride, you have to be willing to be different, be willing to break out of the "lock step" of your friends. You must follow Ralph Waldo Emerson's advice when he said, "Do nothing ordinary," never follow the crowd.
It's sometimes difficult to know the right path to take, the right decisions to make, the right direction to follow.
"Two roads diverged in the woods, and I took the road less traveled by, and that has made all the difference." - Robert Frost
As our boys were growing up and would act out, doing things that we all knew
weren't in their best interest, and were breaking family rules, I would ask the standard Dad question, "Why would you do a thing like that anyway?" They often answered, "Everyone else is doing it." This answer drives most parents crazy! I would respond, "That could be the very reason not to do it." Eighty percent of the people in our world are living well below their potential. Often, as Theroux said, "they are living lives of quiet desperation," they end their lives broke and broken. So the path to success is not doing what everyone else is doing. In fact, this may be the surest direction for us to take if we want to fail. The most certain path to success is to be a *contrarian, go against the crowd, act in the opposite way of the masses.
*A contrarian is a person with a preference
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