What Freedom Really Costs

With it being the week of Independence Day in the United States, I wanted to do something a little different this week. I’m sure our clients and friends in Canada and Australia can relate to this as well. This week's message is a little longer than usual, but just read on, it’s worth it.

It’s vitally important that we take a step back from our businesses from time to time and take inventory of why we’re doing what we’re doing and realize how blessed we are to have the freedom to create any kind of company we want.

This week I’m sharing an excerpt from an email I received from one of our wonderful clients. Personally, I was sobbing by the time I got to the end of it, and I believe it’s worth sharing with all of you. The people involved will remain anonymous, but I want you to let this resonate when you think of the current business challenges and opportunities you are currently facing.

We all need comrades and peers that really understand us and what we’re going through. This is one of the primary reasons we created our mastermind groups here at BCSG. Nothing replaces a relationship built from like-minded people facing the same challenges and common mission. It’s tough to put in words, so I’ll let my client share her story with you for a little perspective check here today.

Read through this and think about what more you could be doing to maximize the freedoms in business we have been given. Personally, as a veteran of foreign war, I can’t think of a better way to gain needed perspective than to remember the sacrifice others make for us to “get” to go to a job we choose each and every day.

Get a tissue…

(Excerpt from the email I received)

I smiled this morning when I saw your email. My son who is currently fighting in Afghanistan has the same initials. As a mother, I can’t say enough about the man he is. Perhaps you’ll indulge me for just a moment.

It brings tears to my eye’s to think of all he’s endured for the sake of our freedom, and all the while, volunteering to do so. He is a Staff Sergeant and Purple Heart recipient who was supposed to be discharged this last February, having served his 4 years of time with one deployment already under his belt. His unit received the news that they would deploy to Afghanistan last October. He was told just days before their deployment that because of his earlier discharge (initially it wasn’t going to be until this Aug.) he would not need to deploy with his men. He could stay behind and begin to prepare for the February discharge date. (My son) made the decision immediately! He would not leave his men. He deployed voluntarily, not because he had to, not because he was paid to do so, simply because he could not see his men, who he had trained extensively for this specific deployment, leave for an expectedly difficult mission without him.

Within the first 3 months of deployment they lost 2 men from their unit of 110. One of the men was his best friend. They were deployed to the previous headquarters of the Taliban, nestled in the heart of Kandahar, at a base called Spur Wan Guar. (If you’re a reader, the book Lions of Kandahar vividly describes the battle that took place to secure this base in 2006). They defended it bravely but suffered over 25 casualties and the loss of 4 brave American soldiers.

As I think about the circumstances of his deployment, the fact that he didn’t have to go but willingly volunteered, and I think about the loss he suffered as his friend, brother and comrade died before his eyes, I cannot help but believe that it was all divine providence. The guilt he would have suffered knowing his friend died without him would have been more than most men could endure. My son fought hard alongside his friend, and was there while his mangled body was put onto the helicopter, and knew although his friends life was over, his life would be changed forever. It makes me think of the scene from Saving Private Ryan when the aged Ryan stood at the grave side of Cpt. Miller and pondered if he had lived a life worthy of the one they had paid for him to have. Kyle reminds me every day of this thought. While so many pay the price for my freedom, am I truly living a life worthy of earning it?

(My son) is ready to come home in three short weeks from now and as we join with our friends and family on the 4th to enjoy some food and fireworks we will have much to be grateful for. I trust your 4th of July will include thoughts towards those who have paid the ultimate price for our freedoms. Thank you for your insightful and informative program and I hope to glean much as I continue with your services.

With much gratitude,

(Your client)

What areas of your business are you not maximizing when you’ve been given this gift of freedom? What areas do you need some help from others to get you over the hump? Where are you just “going through the motions” when you could be giving more to what you do? Others have sacrificed so much for our ability to choose freely. Make sure you’re maximizing your choices!

Have a phenomenal weekend!

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