“One conversation can brighten your entire world, even if it’s raining outside.”-Rayna Rose Exelbierd
The weather in Florida is a-lot like running your own business. Sometimes it can even pour while the sun is still shining. Even in the rain, we can seek out sunshine through connection and showing up. You never know who you will meet or what you will learn!
Yesterday was the 3 year anniversary of The Rose Grows. I had a pretty big to do list, but was inspired by my friend Christa to go out on the boat and celebrate. This was the first Sunday in weeks where the weather in Florida actually resembled that of a beautiful tropical screensaver and not a war of the worlds movie set.
As we set out, my new friend with the boat introduced himself as Joe. I asked why he was named his name, and he responded it was after his grandfather. I told him my grandfather was also named Joseph. A Holocaust Survivor who spoke 7 languages. I shared it was a very powerful and important name. As we continued the conversations, he explained his work in the home restoration industry. His business repairs all sorts of damages including floods and fires. I gained a ton of insight as he shared his journey and life experiences.
With his permission, I am sharing one particular story. It’s too good not to be written down. I know there is someone who will be inspired by the lesson in the flooded home Joe visited a few years back. He said, “I once walked into a client’s home, that had at least 2 feet of water inside. I’ve taught my sales people how to overcome any objection, but in this situation, I had no answer.”
He continued by saying, “The woman said she had a flight at 3pm. I explained that her house was in critical condition to be fixed. When she returned, there would be even more damage. That she MUST fix it TODAY.” Joe paused, and slowly said, “She told me to take a seat. She rolled up her sleeve, and showed me her tattoo from the Holocaust. She said I’m not missing my granddaughter’s birthday for anything, and the house will be here when I get back.” He pleaded with her, “I’ll do the repairs for free, please, you can’t leave!!” The woman thanked Joe for his kindness and he said he never heard from her ever again.
Joe never met a Holocaust Survivor before that day, but he never forgot the woman. Certainly we could imagine a thousand other endings for this story, but one of the biggest lessons I take is that sometimes you will have just one opportunity to inspire or educate another person with your values, personality, experiences or even outlook on life. Never underestimate how much value you can bring yourself and others by not only showing up, but being fully present and asking meaningful questions. The day led to new friendships and opportunities. Had I stayed at home, I definitely would have felt less energized and inspired today.
As I reflect on the last 3 years, it’s easy to focus on the obstacles that have rained throughout the seasons. Today as I was mentoring a teen from Africa, I was reminded of just how far I’ve come, literally and figuratively. I’m still not totally sure where this rainbow of sunshine and stormy clouds ends and begins, but my vision of inspiring men and women of all ages to be more kind and chase their dreams together is forever.
I want to thank everyone in my network and extended networks for all of the love and support you provide me with each and everyday. The Rose Grows.
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