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Some 30 years ago, I designed a “class ring” for myself. Never having graduated from college and not having a college ring, I wanted to celebrate the education I’d received in my life. So, I designed a ring that represented this education and all the things that brought success into my life.

On one side of my ring are four letters, I A S M, which represent a major component to my success: ENTHUSIASM! For me, enthusiasm is the fuel that fires passion into all I do.

As Emerson once said, “Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm!” To be enthusiastic means that we are connected with THE source of life (I call God). When I am connected, I feel very energized, because I KNOW that I can accomplish anything!

After my time in the Marines, I thought I would go to college, play football and get a degree so I could coach high school football. But while I was waiting for fall term, I took a job working for an auto auction company. My tasks were rather mundane, like jockeying cars on the auction yard, checking cars in that were to be auctioned off, cleaning the restrooms, sweep-up and so on. I dove right in and did those tasks and gave it my very best. I approached everything with great enthusiasm and before long, was given more responsibility. I made phone calls to auto dealers, handled the paperwork of auto sales that were taking place at the auction all the while giving it everything I had. After a while, I was trusted to try out my bid calling chant, auctioning off cars as they came into the auction ring!

As I was given more and more to do, I saw a great deal of potential in this business and decided not to go to school. I wanted to learn everything about the business that I possibly could so I was the first one in the door and the last to leave each day. I poured my heart and soul into it and it was very rewarding, both monetarily and psychologically! All because I was enthusiastic about what I was doing!

In a little over two and one-half years, I was able to open my own auto auction at the age of 22, which was totally unheard of in the auction industry! I attribute that opportunity to the enthusiasm I brought to the job every day. And because I was enthusiastic, so was everyone else. Truly, enthusiasm is highly contagious!

Over the years, I’ve brought enthusiasm to endeavors in was involved with. But if I found that enthusiasm waning, I would revisit why I was doing what I had embarked on and then remember an old saying I heard while I was growing up, which was: “if something was worth doing, it was worth putting all your heart, soul and might into it.” That provided me the impetus to look for a spark and fan the flames with renewed enthusiasm.

I highly encourage you to be enthusiastic about what it is that you may do. Embrace whatever comes along for you and be excited about it - even if you have to “fake it before you make it!” With a smile on your face and enthusiasm in your heart, you will find that even the difficult things can become more enjoyable.

Gordon Parks famously said, “Enthusiasm is the electricity of life.” Electrify your life with enthusiasm and you’ll be amazed at what you can do!

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