GREENWICH, N.Y. — I don’t know about you, but I get really charged up when I go to a women’s agricultural conference. Sign me up: Business Acumen, Social Marketing, Being a Business Partner… I attend as many different breakout sessions as possible. My mind becomes a buzz with ideas and to-dos as I listen to the speakers – and then I hit the trade show floor. WOW!
That bag, you know the one? It’s the one that every registration desk hands you. It holds a couple of sponsor giveaways, a conference schedule and a list of vendors and their locations on the trade show floor.
Yes, that’s the one, I fill it up.
I go from booth to booth, grabbing cards, talking, mulling my thoughts with complete strangers. I feel like a kid in a candy store, I must look like it too! My mind is a flurry of thoughts and ideas as I race through.
Then, as quickly as it started, the conference ends, and the closing remarks are made. I am flying high. I load into the car, putting my “bag of hopes and dreams” on the seat beside me. Then I pull out of the parking lot. As I drive away I am starting to make big plans for what I am going to do and how I am going to do it.
I start to feel somewhat overwhelmed about halfway home, wondering how I am going to do all of it. And then, reality starts to set in.
Thoughts of the kids and dinner march through my head. My mind begins to wander back to all of the stuff I had left behind when I drove out of the yard and headed to the conference. I start to feel heavier.
At last, I pull into my driveway, and turn the ignition off. All of the drive to make changes and get things done when I got in the car, sputters a little as I get out.
I walk in the back door and leave my bag of hopes and dreams on the floor, over to the side of the mudroom and life begins once again, after its brief pause while I was away.
Over the next few weeks, that bag of hopes and dreams gets passed by, briefly thought about and moved to the dining room. Then the day comes and I am under the gun to clean and tidy because company is coming. The bag gets moved further away, to a corner in the office.
After 6 months or so of collecting dust, I finally resign myself to the fact that I forgot all of the great ideas that I had put into that bag…all of those important people that I spoke with don’t seem so important any more. And frankly, my energy is directed elsewhere…time to throw it out.
How sad for that little bag of Hopes and Dreams.
So to you, the reader: here is my challenge. As we head into winter conference season, make that one phone call, send that requested email BEFORE you even pull out of the parking lot. Get the ball rolling.
Set a time in your calendar within a few days after leaving where you can sit down with yourself and make a realistic game plan. Spend time to process all of that information. Keep the momentum up.
What good is your bag of hopes and dreams if it doesn’t become your reality?
From this day forward, commit, pledge, and stand with your bag. You owe it to yourself.