The Open Road — or a Dead-End Street?

Saturday afternoon the now famous 36-ft green RV with the RoadTripNation crew aboard rolled back our long country lane here in Franklin, TN.  They are making the 08 trip from California to Maine and wanted to talk with my son Jared (Sisters of Rwanda director) – who lives in Rwanda but is currently here in Nashville.  What an interesting group!  Three long-time buddies graduated from college and began asking the common question “what do I want to do with my life?” They are now interviewing people who have found their passion.  They were determined to expose themselves to more than just the traditional life roads.  Like the original RTN gang they hopped in a green RV and hit the road to talk with inspiring people from all walks of life to find out how they came to do what they love for a living.

Roadtrip Nation has evolved into a PBS series, three books, an online community, and a student movement.  PBS sends people on the road who are interested in exploring the world outside their comfort zone, talking with individuals who chose to define their own road in life, and sharing their experiences with our generation.

I was blown away by their Manifesto – written on the back of the bus:

“So, what do you want to do with your life?”
You should be a lawyer, a doctor, an accountant, a consultant….
Blah, blah, blah.
Everywhere you turn people try to tell you who to be and what to do with your life.  We call that the noise…Block it…Shed it..
Leave it for the conformists..
As a generation, we need to get back to focusing on individuality.
Self-construction rather than mass production.
Define your own road in life instead of traveling down someone else’s.  Listen to yourself.
Your road is the Open Road. Find it.
Find the Open Road.

This young generation is not content to live out traditional work lives while missing meaning, purpose and fulfillment.  They are determined to connect their passion and calling to what they do each day.  What about you?  Have you found your open road – or are you stuck on a dead-end street?

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2 Responses to “The Open Road — or a Dead-End Street?”

  1. Jay Peroni Says:

    I just got back from a trip to one of my favorite cities – Chicago, “the Windy City.” One of the highlights of my trip was listening to, meeting, and speaking with Chris Gardner. In case you missed the movie The Pursuit of Happyness starring Will Smith, the movie was based off Chris’ true life story. In the rags to riches book and movie, Gardner’s life is chronicled as we see his long and painful journey from inner-city Milwaukee to ultimate success on Wall Street. He grew up poor and fatherless. This life ignited a passion within him to break the cycle of deadbeat dads. After a brief stint in the Navy, a failed medical career, and a tough sales job in the medical devices industry, Chris eventually landed his first job on Wall Street. If the story ended there, it would be simple. Chris’s story became increasingly complex as he almost simultaneously became a father and homeless at the same time. His ability to rise from poverty to multi-millionaire is what makes his story so unique.

    If you do not have motivation, you will not change. You will not find your purpose and passion. Chris found the inner passion because he wanted his son to know his daddy. He wanted to break the cycle and find a way not only to make ends meet but provide a different life for his child. Becoming broke; homeless, fighting for your next meal, moving from homeless shelter to shelter, and caring for a 14 month old while working 70 hour work weeks will quickly help you find the inner passion.

    My passion is to help others experience financial freedom by incorporating their faith into their financial plans. I have a bold goal to reach over a million people in the next 10 years. I want to impact the world and leave it a better place than when I was born. I saw my grandfather work 3 jobs to provide for his family only to eventually lose his life savings to inflation, taxes, and the nursing home. I want to help reverse the trend in America. Financial freedom is possible with a plan!

    Jay Peroni, CFP
    Author of The Faith-Based Millionaire

  2. therealmotherlode Says:

    Wow. That Manifesto is electrifying. That was even more jolting than my richly brewed mornin’ cup of joe.

    Amazing. Simply amazing.

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