I have a friend who was a Wall Street wizard and enjoyed a lot of status and success in his field by many people’s standards. However, even though it provided him with wealth and prestige, he was not happy or fulfilled in his daily work for many years. He was held captive by his ego, and his personal life started to unwind as a result.
Then one day when his life took a particularly low blow, he had to make some hard choices. During that time he noticed that the flower shop at the local train station was for sale. It was in an ideal location because of the daily volume of commuters who stopped in to buy their loved ones flowers on the way home from work. This was in addition to the many holidays throughout the year that drew a big business as well.
He had visited this shop many times himself and enjoyed the low stress atmosphere and had gotten to know the staff quite well. Because he had become open-minded, humbled and open to new possibilities, he was able to see the opportunity that presented itself and decided to buy the flower shop and give up his high powered job.
It may sound insane to the outside observer but his life was imploding and all that mattered to him anymore was being happy, fulfilled and embracing his life instead of struggling through it to keep up appearances.
He has never regretted his decision and his shop is thriving. The added benefit is that he makes a lot of money doing what he has come to love personally and professionally. Plus his wife is enjoying the beautiful flowers that surround her life as well.
I have always loved this story and though everyone does not have the desire or funds to buy a flower shop or the capital to just leave their job, it makes a very good point. The story seems to remind us to be open to opportunities that present themselves and follow those things that we find personally fulfilling. It also cautions against staying with something just for the money or title we may enjoy.
I have heard many stories like this one and they can happen even in retirement. I know of a man who attended a chocolate making show to appease his wife and ended up so fascinated by the way chocolate is made, that he now enjoys making and selling chocolates all over the country. He relishes the unexpected and delicious way he gets to enjoy his retirement.
It is those delicious surprises and experiences that we “accidently” discover that adds a whole new, and often life changing component to our lives, when we are open-minded enough to see and follow them to a whole new adventure.
Be open to opportunities that could help your life blossom in unexpected ways.