My friend Mike was worried. The music store where he had been giving lessons for nearly 20 years had just gone out of business.
Even though he made money playing drums with various bands and running a home recording studio, this turn of events represented a big chunk of his income that suddenly dried up.
The stakes were high, since Mike had a home and a family to support.
A few months after I learned of this job loss, I spoke with Mike again. I hesitantly asked, “So, how is your teaching schedule these days?”
He slowly said he still had a few private students, but then he lit up as he launched into a long list of new things he was doing …
New bands he was playing with, new recording studio clients, new performance opportunities that came his way.
“Financially, it was rough for a while,” Mike admitted. “But now so many cool things have come along to fill the void. If I had known all these things were available to me, I would have cut back on teaching years ago.”
He had made the mistake many of us make throughout our lives — sticking to what we know, inside our comfort zones.
One of the big reasons Mike continued teaching so much over the years was a genuine interest in supporting his students and seeing them grow.
But in doing so he had to turn down a lot of new offers that came his way — staying with his safe, predictable routine instead of taking chances.
That’s understandable. We all do that to some degree.
But, what he discovered was the store closing and his short-term loss of teaching income was a blessing in disguise. Yes, he turned the proverbial lemons into lemonade!
So … what can you learn from Mike’s experience?
What are you holding on to that isn’t serving you any more?
What opportunities are you passing by because you maintain the status quo in your life?
What “disappointing” turn of events are you cursing instead of looking for the hidden opportunity?
P.S. This is a true story about my friend Mike Ehrhard, who sadly passed away in 2018 while in his mid-60s. Thanks for the inspiration, Mike!
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This is Day 15 of my 30-Day Blog Writing Challenge.
Bob Baker helps musicians, authors, artists, and creative entrepreneurs use their talents and know-how to make a living and make a difference in the world!