Saturday, November 29, 2014

The Promise of a Pencil

"The Promise of a Pencil" by Adam Braun

This was a motivational and great book.  If you think you can't accomplish something or you're too young, you need to read this.  The author knew since he was very young that he wanted to work in finances and his whole life was a clear path in that direction.  Then he did a semester at sea and he began to wonder if thee was more to life than what he had been chasing.  He backbacked around the world and would ask a child in whichever country he was in if they could have one thing what would it be.  One little boy said he wanted a pencil.  Adam had a pencil and he gave it to the little boy and this is when he realized that something as small as a pencil could change a childs life.  Adam realized that giving was better than receiving and he decided that he wanted to fund a school in a third world country.  He quit his job at the prestigious finance company and started a non-profit.  He has now opened many schools and his non-profit has received numerous awards.  Truly when we mix our passion with determination it is amazing the impact we can make.  "I believe that where you start in life should not dictate where you finish."  Because not everyone gets a fair start but I think everyone deserves a fair shot.  "We fear leaving those familiar surroundings, which is natural, but through exploration of the unfamiliar we stop focusing on the labels that define what we are and discover who  we are."  "In moments of uncertainty, when you must choose between two paths, allowing yourself to be overcome by either the fear of failure or the dimly lit light of possibility, immerse yourself in the life you would be most proud to live."  So good, so, so good.  Live the life you would be most proud to live.  What a great statement.  The first school Adam built was dedicated to his grandma who was a concentration camp survivor.  When he told her why he was building these schools and helping others she responded, "It feels like this is why I survived.  I survived for this.  It feels like it's all coming back to me, everything I suffered for is coming back to me, but in good ways.  All the bad things I went through were for these good things to happen."  God sees the suffering and He always turns beauty for ashes. "...that the biggest opportunities for growth are not found in the midst of success, but in the methods through which we address failure."  Growth occurs when we fail and get back up again, willling to try again.  We can't reach success until we've failed.  "Here's my best advice: make the little decisions with your head and the big ones with your heart."  "Certain people help you see a future that you could never have envisioned without their influence.  They make you a better version of yourself."  Surround yourself with these people.  " can't keep saying, 'I'll get started tomorrow.'  The world has far too many problems, and you are way too smart and capable to not help tackle them.  Your time is now."  Take that first step towards what you've always wanted to do and start living the life you've always wanted to live.  "I'll tell them that the most direct route to happiness is through creating joy for someone else, and that change doesn't happen through hard work alone."  I highly recommend this book.  Read it and be inspired.

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