I wish I had a dime for all the times I have said, “If I knew then what I know now.” And yet, I don’t believe in holding on to regrets, because in the end, everything is a lesson learned. Here is a lesson, especially to all the young couples starting out; “You can always make more money, but you can never make more time.”
Recently, during a spring cleaning, I came across an old photo album. You rarely see them anymore because now everything is digitized, but our family still has hundreds of photos in albums. Funny how your mind travels back into time with pictures. Ever noticed that? I did when I stumbled across my dusty albums. What a flood of memories and emotions.
The early years
As I went through these photos, especially those of the early years of my marriage, I noticed I wasn’t in a lot of the pictures. I remember well those years. I remember holding two full-time jobs just to make ends meet. I remember kissing my kids in the forehead while they slept in the mornings on my way out the door, and then kissing them again in the forehead, this time while they slept at night on my return home.
I remember missing sporting events, parent–teacher conferences, school plays, and just them growing up, because I “had to make ends meet.” It was a miracle my marriage lasted through those tough years. It’s amazing that my kids recognize me as dad, even thou I missed so many important events.
If I knew then what I know now, I would have struggled with making myself wealthy, instead of making someone else wealthy while still struggling. If I knew then what I know now, I would have spent much more time seeing my kids grow, while chasing my dreams instead of building a dream for someone else.
That is why I am so adamant about people living their values. If you value your family, live the family. If you value your freedom, find a way to live with that freedom. Don’t waste time doing anything else. You can always make more money, but you can never make more time.
So for those Facebook friends who are reading this post, the next time you see my smiling face with my grand kids in bed with my wife and I, you will better understand where my smile is coming from. I’m living my dream. I got my second chance to spend my time with the people I love, and that is a blessing to me.
And if you are in the same rut I was in during the early years, I highly encourage you to seek out the right mentors and take massive action to get yourself moving in a new direction. The answers are all over, YOU just need to find them. But what I know now that I didn’t know then is that there is always a way. All it takes is having laser focus, being ABSOLUTELY clear as to what you want, and taking massive action.
I can tell you honestly, it requires work to make this dream a reality. I can tell you it will require developing new skills. Rest assured, you will face obstacles along the way. You will experience disappointments. But with all that said, I can also say, without a shadow of a doubt, it is worth the struggle. In fact, the rewards GREATLY outweighs the effort. And if you are going to struggle while building someone else’s dream, doesn’t it make sense to struggle to build your own dream and your own freedom? You know the answer to that. I challenge you to make it happen.
Remember, “It’s your time to shine!”
Mike Martinez 856-430-2640
P.S. Let me here your comments.