This has been a great year in many ways so far. I am honored to be your Ankeny Area Chamber President and look forward to the second half of the year and all that it holds.
This year, though, I have been reminded of the circle of life and how quickly life can change. Our family has endured a sudden illness on my wife’s side, the passing of my close friend’s father, and most recently, the Chamber staff enjoyed the birth of little Avery to one of our staff members. These moments in life always tend to make me, and I would assume most of us, stop and think about how precious life is. We all know life is precious, but we need these reminders to realize it sometimes.
On July 24, I was reminded again of how quickly life can change, while at the same time I was reminded that with the right attitude, determination and drive, we can all adjust and adapt. On this day, the Ankeny Chamber hosted its monthly membership luncheon and was honored to have Aaron Thomas as our speaker. I will assume you know who Mr. Thomas is. If not, then I highly encourage you to research him and his family’s story. You will be a better person after reading it. Thank you, Mr. Thomas, for sharing your story and more importantly, for inspiring people to overcome adversity.
The circle of life is alive and well in our businesses, also. There is the birth of a new business, like Fleet Farm which recently opened here in Ankeny. Then there are the slow periods of business sometimes, which help us to re-focus our efforts to stay ahead of the competition or avoid an illness called “in the red.” Unfortunately, sometimes there is the end of a business as well. However, if it was a great “life,” like 75 to 100 years in business, then it was most certainly a great accomplishment.
Things change, and we have to adapt and adjust. Sometimes the change is expected and joyful, and sometimes it is not and seems to happen at the worst possible time. However, with the right perspective and a positive attitude, we can get through it. You may even surprise yourself by becoming a stronger leader than you were before the circle of life threw you a reminder.
So look around you and assess where you need to re-focus your efforts in order to be a better person or stronger leader. So you can be that person in business, in the community and in your family. The reward need not be financial but one of fulfillment.
Please check out our website for upcoming events: http://www.ankeny.org/.