In the last post, I defined front porch thoughts as “quiet and reflective thoughts. They are thoughts focused on the big picture, the meaning of life, and how life’s thousands of details fit into place like pieces of a jigsaw puzzle.”
And during the last twenty months of regular blogging, I occasionally would deviate from my regular themes of Gumption, Personal Responsibility, and Life Lessons from the movie Forrest Gump and write something specific about my own life’s journey. Sometimes they’ve taken the form of goals for the coming year and sometimes they’ve been an update on a specific aspect of my life. They are all listed as a group under the Steve’s Journey category.
Today, I’m introducing a new format. Consider it a subcategory of Steve’s Journey. It will simply be called Front Porch Thoughts and will be accompanied by a specific date or time-frame reference. Front porch thoughts will be an opinion, an update on my life, or an update on my business philosophy … sometimes it will be all three. Sometimes there will be answers … sometimes there might only be questions.
Here are 13 front porch thoughts as I sit and ponder during the summer of 2011.
- Moving to Montana four years ago was an excellent decision. I love the mountains and the community in which I live. I love the people and the Montana mindset.
- In the first forty-one years of my life I lived in four places. In the last thirteen years, I’ve lived in four places, including three in the last four years. I now feel settled after last year’s move. Moving (and change) have been both disruptive and the best thing I could have done. Forced growth has been a good thing. I’m wiser and more grounded from the experience.
- The best-made plans don’t always work out the way they were planned. But they do work if you learn to accept what’s available. I’m learning to be accepting.
- Building a strong foundation is critical to building a house (or business) that will stand for a long time. But to build a foundation so strong and not leave enough resources to actually build the house would be a waste … or the equivalent of not building anything at all. My business foundation is rock solid … it’s time to build that house.
- Good ideas evolve (and get better) over time. My business model (and the Gumption concept) has taken three major evolutions in the past four years. Evolution #1 was generally good but lacked specifics. It was too general.
- Evolution #2 got specific, provided details, but was too complicated.
- Evolution #3 is simpler, ongoing, and personally very exciting. Stay tuned.
- Evolutions #4, 5 and 6 are as yet unimagined. But, I know they will come.
- Evolutions don’t happen every week or month … they seem to come in intervals of many months or even years. Details and hard work need to happen every day.
- Front porch thoughts are where the details get grouped together and the evolutions are eventually revealed.
- Forcing an evolution to occur is impossible. Forcing the hard work and details is possible … and absolutely necessary!
Current Affairs (just for fun)
- The current debt crisis is another charade by our politicians to make themselves look (and feel) important while they demonstrate a serious lack of Gumption and personal responsibility. Blame the other guy seems the best ongoing explanation that we get. Years and years of short-term and self-interested decision-making by politicians of both stripes have produced a system that is bloated and rife with fraud and waste. When will a real leader who has America’s long-term interests stand up and fix this mess? I hope and pray that it’s soon.
- During the past few years, I’ve spent less. My income has gone down. I’ve reduced my expenses. Why can’t the federal government spend less? Why does it always have to spend more? Just cut 5%! Eliminate the deadwood, and let’s move on.
Next Blog Title: Gumption 2.0
Next Blog Date: August 1, 2011