Monday, May 23, 2011

Navigating whitewater

There is something to be said about people who can handle whatever you throw at them - the US Navy breeds these people in droves. After all, the current operational tempo - meaning the pace of operations - is so high that its difficult to find time to maintain, equip and train our ships before sending them out again. But that's the climate we've been operating in for years now, and we're all sort of accustomed to what ADM Harvey calls a 'professional whitewater'.

In fact, in my personal life and in NHS, people are constantly commenting on how busy I am, how many things I'm tackling. Some have said I simply don't know how to relax. But the truth is, I don't really want to. Because in and amongst all of this, I've found a simple enjoyment from doing all that I can with what I have, where I am. People talk about living like it's some sort of bucket list of personal enjoyment experiences. I contend that making your mark on the world starts with a lot of chiseling, and that's what I'm trying to do. And so I think it's safe to say that I've learned to actually enjoy the professional whitewater. Every hard-fought paddle stroke is another chisel mark on the world - and no matter how small, over time, they will make a difference.

Hat tip ADM Harvey, and to everyone else who gets this post - plot your course, keep the screws turning and I'll see you on the other side of the horizon.


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