We all have something we are passionate about. We have dreams, so we make plans. If we are ambitious enough, some of us even get to see those dreams become reality.
But in the end, like my good friend Doug Ferguson says, "It’s up to you."
It is up to you whether you pursue your passion and allow yourself to make your dreams become that reality.
For me, like many other young producers, that passion is the cattle business. You may find it surprising to know, however, that my cattle addiction only began a few years ago.
I grew up on a farm. My family had beef cattle and I even showed cattle for a short time in 4-H. To be honest though, I had very little interest of the bovine kind until I went to college. It took a realization that I did not want to go to vet school like I had originally intended when I started college, plus one very special beef cattle production professor and two summers spent working with forage and grazing research trials for me to realize that the beef cattle industry was where I belonged.
The thing is, it takes some of us longer than others to find our passions, realize our dreams and make them happen. Heck, it took me until I was 21 years old to just figure out that I wanted to go to college. Six years later, here I am with a two degrees and working for a progressive grass-fed beef cattle operation in southeastern Idaho. If you had told me where I would be now before I began this journey I would not have believed.
It is funny how, when you step out of your comfort zone, challenge yourself and take some risks how opportunities will come along.
In my very first blog for Beef Producer I emphasized that young beef producers should be goal oriented. This still holds true. I truly believe that if you’re going to pursue any passion or dream, if you truly want it to become reality you need a plan.
However, I believe even more important than the plan is the drive to see it through. Too many young producers are resting on their laurels these days or are too hesitant to take that next step.
Don’t be a rope skipper and quit wasting time.
Take the initiative, set your goals, make your plans and make it happen. And the most important thing you can remember is the world owes you nothing and if you want to do something you have to make it happen yourself. Yes, there will be those that help you along the way but if you are unwilling to make an initiative yourself, you’ll never do or be anything more than what you already are.
I will leave you with this quote from Sheila Graham which truly says how I feel we must approach our dreams and passions. To do anything less, we might as well not even dream at all.
"You can have anything you want if you want it desperately enough. You must want it with an exuberance that erupts through the skin and joins the energy that created the world."