LIFE…it’s what we make it

LIFE…it’s what we make it
I’m Class of 2001…Ten Years as an FSC Alum
This one’s for the late Walter Coleman & Col. Chester Wiley: two great men who went OneMoreStep time and time again for their students at Florida Southern College.  I’m glad I was one of them…
Life…it’s what we make it.
Cliché? Sure.
Is it still worth talking or writing about?
When we have no more doubt, worry, frustration, fear, disappointment, or challenging circumstances…we can all put this one to bed and stop going over it.  However, I don’t think that is going to happen anytime soon.  All of those things are just part of life.
As my mother and my 2nd Grade Teacher (Ms. Debbie Keeton) always used to tell us growing up, “Did you see a sign down the road that said life was fair?”   Nope.
OneMoreStep thought for this week: We get out of life what we put into it.  Even when we’re dealt challenging circumstances and things don’t go our way, the beauty of the situation is that we get to choose…It’s our choice to either let it happen or make it happenWe are what we think we are
Life…it’s what we make it.
We are what we think we are…
I had a professor over ten years ago at Florida Southern College by the name of Walter Coleman.  He taught Human Resources as well as the capstone course for all Business & Economics majors – Business 499: Problems & Policies.  To this day I can still hear his voice…he used to tell us almost daily, things like, “Mr. Scott…you are what you think you are.”  I remember hearing these words of wisdom as a 21-year-old college kid.  Now, as a 31-year-old young man in the midst of a career, I understand them.
If we think we aren’t good enough, we probably never will be.  If we think we will never be promoted, there’s a good chance we won’t.  If we think we’ll be single forever, we run the risk of never opening up our hearts and minds to finding that special someone.  If we think our dreams are too far fetched, then they will never become a reality.  If we go into each day thinking we’ll have one negative experience after another, we’ll rarely disappoint ourselves.
Here’s the good news…it’s up to us!  We get to choose whether today will be a “good one” or just “another long, frustrating day” fighting the good fight.  Focusing on the good stuff helps…thinking about the positive things and/or the things that we have the power to impact beats the heck out of dwelling on ALL of those things outside of our control.  (Philippians 4:8 is a great resource… that basically says, think happy thoughts, and in turn…we’ll be happier)
Make it Happen
I also had a professor in college by the name of Colonel Chester Jeffrey Wiley.  He taught Principles of Management and Managerial Accounting.  If you got an “A” on a test in his class, he would give you a grape soda…and he’d shake it up and throw it to you across the classroom so you wouldn’t and couldn’t open it and drink it during class.  So old school…I loved it.
He also was known for his 30-minute seminar on how to become a millionaire.  The deal was…when you became a millionaire yourself; you had to send him a case of grape soda, his favorite.  At the time, around the year 2000, he had received over 15 cases of grape soda from former students…
I also loved that.
Professor Wiley used to tell us that there are three types of people:
·      People that LET IT HAPPEN
·      People that MAKE IT HAPPEN
·      People that stand around asking WHAT HAPPENED?
If you want the job, the promotion, the responsibility, and all that comes along with it, there’s only one thing to do…and that’s to simply reach deep down, go OneMoreStep when nobody else does…and make it happen.  Stay late.  Go in early.  Personally walk over and conduct business, engage in conversations, or call meetings in person vs. over the phone or email.  When everyone else is coasting along, refusing to do MORE, refusing to step up, and simply letting it happen, if you want it bad enough…go make it happen.  It’s up to you.
If you have an idea, a passion for something or someone, and you know deep in your heart that your idea will work…and that if leveraging your own passion can make a difference that matters to something or someone…you owe it to yourself to make it happen.  The time is now.  Don’t listen to the voices in your brain telling you ALL of the reasons that it’s a bad idea…if it’s your passion, if it will work, and if it will make a true difference that matters…go OneMoreStep.  Make it happen.
If we want something bad enough, we must MAKE IT HAPPEN; because if we sit around just letting it happen, we’ll soon be asking ourselves “what happened?”
Life…it’s what we make it.  We get out of it what we put into it.  Go OneMoreStep when you have a great idea, when you find your true passion, or when you can make a difference…MAKE IT HAPPEN.
Thank you Professor Wiley & Professor Coleman…and thank you Florida Southern College for an education that has prepared me and continues to serve me well in life and in my professional career.  Also, thanks to my parents for sending me to Florida Southern…it was a great choice.  I am very grateful.
Have a great day.
ida Southern College ’01


  • July 12, 2011

    I can remember setting out for Lakeland Florida "taking Taylor to college" with the grandparents in tow right behind us (that's the way we do it in the south…) all the while thinking it was the biggest mistake to date in my life as a parent. However, shortly upon arrival we had the opportunity to meet students, professors, "Deans of this and that"- And, while I cried most of the 14 hours back to Kentucky (and the three months following), I am pretty sure FSC was a most positive force. So today, I join you in saying, "Thanks Florida Southern! You did not disappoint!" Thanks for realizing that, for parents, college is just as scary as first grade! Professor Whiley – you were the definition of One More Step! I thank you and think of you often. I'm sure you're sharing your grape soda with the angels!
    Tay, great post! BTW, you don't disappoint either!
    Love you,

  • July 12, 2011

    This is exactly what people mean when they say, "you make your own luck." I have always been one to be considereed "lucky." I always tell people that is because I decided I would be. Now if I could just figure out those lottery numbers…

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