About 20 years ago, Chuck and I joined twenty-five hundred others in the California AIDS Ride – a bike ride from San Francisco to Los Angeles where we peddled over 500 miles to raise money for AIDS research.
We camped in tents, ate tons of pasta for dinner, and literally slept like a rock each night. The views were breath-taking as we peddled down the CA coast without much fanfare.
On the last day of the event, we peddled into Los Angeles for the closing ceremony. The streets were blocked off and thousands of people were on hand to cheer and welcome us to the finish line.
When we arrived tired and sore, but exhilarated, the founder of the event, Dan Pallotta, gave a congratulatory speech, but his opening line threw everyone off.
“There is no hope!” he said.
No hope? Are you kidding me? I did this entire ride, and now at the end, this guy is saying there’s no hope? What’s up with that?
After such a joyful experience, everyone in the crowd was shocked. But Dan was toying with us.
After saying there was no hope, he paused to let the thought sink in, and then noted that instead of hope, “There was now $7.6 million in the bank raised by us for AIDS research and support!”
The crowd went bonkers, cheering and celebrating.
Dan’s speech has really stuck with me these past 20 years. I just love the idea of making hope real. It’s one thing to have hope. But it’s another to take action and make hope real.
I dare say that we all have hope. And I dare say that many of us live with unrequited hopes and dreams and desires. Hope can become a place where we hide. Hope can be a thing that we’re afraid to make real.
How many of us have an internal voice saying, “I wish this would be different,” or “I hope this works out.”
It can be easy to loose hope. But how do we get it back when the going gets tough? Here’s a simple four-step approach to help keep us on track:
H – Be hungry.
Acknowledge the hunger in your spirit. What do you really want? What puts a fire in your belly? What would fulfill you and give greater meaning to your life?
O – Be open.
Whatever your hunger, it’s a good thing… it means you have hope and are open to possibilities and opportunities.
It’s so much more fun to create from what’s happening, instead of reacting to what’s happening.
P – Be purposeful.
Are you on purpose with your work in the world? What is your daily practice? What are you doing today to make hope real?
E – Be enthusiastic.
I love the idea of being so enthusiastic about something that you can’t wait to get out of bed in the morning and get started. How many of us can say that?
I believe that if you are enthusiastic you will become a magnet for what you want to create. The universe literally begins to throw the right stuff, at the right time, in your direction.
If we’re not enthusiastic, and only half awake or aware, we’re not bringing aliveness to what we want to create.
Our life is all made up and we get to make it up however we choose. Be hungry. Be open. Be purposeful. Be enthusiastic.
May your hope be made real.
More to come,