opportunities, stepping stones, and taking that first step

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I recently viewed a 2013 video that Ashton Kutcher gave at the Teen Choice awards (yep, I’m with it like that).

You can see the video here.

Surprisingly, Chris inspired me (I gotta go with the name his mama gave him). He talked about opportunities that came his way. He says “I believe that opportunity looks a lot like hard work.” He talked about his first job working for his dad carrying shingles up to a roof. He went on to being a dishwasher in a restaurant. He then moved up by working in a deli in a supermarket and working in a factory sweeping Cheerio dust off the floor. He says, “I never had a job I was better than. I was just lucky to have a job. And, every job I had was a stepping stone to my next job.” Can I just say, I want to take his mama out for coffee and tell her how much I admire her?

I’m stuck on this little clip in the whole 4.35 minute video. Actually, I’m stuck on stepping stones.

I don’t agree with much Mr. C. Ashton Kutcher says or stands for, but I agree with this…

opportunities present themselves as hard work

and opportunities are stepping stones

Sometimes the hard work isn’t carrying shingles up a ladder, it’s taking uphill steps to learn more or educate yourself for what it is you really want to do.

Sometimes the hard work isn’t washing dishes in a restaurant, it’s realizing you don’t have to spend your life in a dead end job.

Sometimes the hard work isn’t working in a deli in a supermarket, it’s learning to live on less to have more time at home with those you love most.

For me, the  hard work was learning who I truly am and what I am very much capable of doing. I spent far too many years thinking I had nothing to offer and no skills to use. My stepping stone was a very hard job that taught me more about myself than it taught me anything else.

Against the sage advice of C. Ashton Kutcher, I did quit that job without another job lined up. I was tired and I was wounded. I needed some rest. I was so busy resting, I almost tripped over opportunity.

don’t trip over your stepping stones

My stepping stone came unexpectedly. A random text from a friend of a friend who had “friends in the industry.” Definitely a huge opportunity. The hard part? Following through and putting myself out there in an email. Hard? Yes. Worth it? Extremely!

I took the next step and am learning and educating myself to be able to do more.

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Sometimes the first step is the hardest step to take.

What opportunity is your stepping stone?

10 thoughts on “opportunities, stepping stones, and taking that first step

  1. I love this. I just talked about this with my Pastor yesterday. He said sometimes faith is standing on the edge of a cliff and jumping off with a smile on your face and knowing there’s a safety net underneath! My husband and I are in a season of “stepping stones”. Myself with this budding ministry and him, leaving a really incredible job for the sake of being with his family. We have to step out in faith and just go with it. Thank you for this!

  2. Oh I just love this! It’s so hard taking a stepping stone when we don’t always know where our destination will exactly be located. But God promises us a “light into our path” not a floodlight taking us to the end of our days. Great post!

  3. Oh do I love this Heidi! I think your perspective is SO TRUE. Our stepping stones look very different in the seasons of our lives and how we discover more about ourselves in each new experience. Taking those bold steps toward something new, or away from something old is incredibly hard- and rewarding. The ability to draw new strength and insight into all we can do- those are the greatest stepping stones in our lives. 🙂

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