Every Day Presents Opportunity

Make sure you don’t look back and regret not working harder, or learning more, or finding a better way.

Make the most of your opportunities. Grab ahold of the moment. You never know if it’ll be your last.

One of my colleagues, Ed Wodalski, passed away in September at the age of 64. It was completely unexpected. He came home on a Wednesday evening after officiating a high school football game, talked to his wife and sat down to rest. He died of a massive heart attack a short while later. Ed was the editor of Plumber magazine, and he handled all the industry and product news in this publication.

It was an even bigger shock in October when a hockey buddy of mine fell dead on the ice during a leisurely lunchtime skate. He was only a few years older than me, and in better shape than I could ever hope to be. That one really stopped me in my tracks.

It’s easy to look at life and think you still have a long way to go. I’m 42 years old, past the halfway point of the average American male’s life expectancy. That’s a harsh realization. If I dropped dead today, most of my goals and dreams would go unfulfilled. But I was fortunate enough to wake up today, and therein lies opportunity. It’s easy to look at your job and think you can put something off until tomorrow, but what if you don’t get tomorrow? Do you want your last day to be spent making excuses, ducking the difficult tasks until a better opportunity comes along, or do you want to get the job done?

Thankfully, opportunity is the yin to death’s yang. But unlike its fatal cousin, you have to seek it. You have to find it and take advantage of it, but it’s out there.

Recognizing opportunity and acting on it is the key to success. But I think it’s also one of the keys to life. You can’t just sit around waiting for tomorrow, waiting for something to be given to you, for another chance or better weather or some divine guidance. Every day presents a new opportunity and it’s on you to make the most of it. And while there may not be anything profound in that statement, it’s one of the greatest truths.

You never know which call or idea might transform your utility. Transformative moments are never scripted. If you treat every job and every day like it’s the most important, you’ll be able to take advantage and reap the rewards when it is. Maybe more importantly, if that big break never comes and you still keep working like it’s just around the corner, you’ll be respected. You’ll be an everyday hero to all the people you’ve helped. And that’s the kind of success you can be proud of when you look back.

So embrace each day, and take full advantage of the opportunity it presents. You never know when it could end, or where it might lead.

Enjoy this month’s issue.


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