Graduation

(Originally written June, 1995)

Thirty one years ago, Davidene and I walked across the state at our high school graduation. To us it was the end of our 12 years of school, but really it was just the beginning of the adventure of life. Those first 17 or 18 years laid the foundation for the rest of our adult lives. Four years later we would graduate from college together. Then we began our time in the military and finally the work force. Little did we realize on those graduation nights how quickly our lives would change.

Sometimes we get burdened by the difficulties of each day, by the darkness that may surround us, and by the obstacles ahead of us. We don’t slow down to see the sunshine peeking through the clouds, or stand back and view life as a whole, or take time to enjoy the special moments it brings. As I think of the various seasons and cycles of life, it is interesting to see how each decade has its special focus.

20’sDecade of Choices – We make decisions regarding our spouses, careers, location, friends, finances, and hobbies. The physical is dominant and we have the energy to go day and night. We are like a shotgun as we do a lot of things, but none of them very well.

30’sDecade of Challenge – We begin to mature as a spouse, a parent, and in our careers. By the end of the decade we are reaching our maximum potential of activity since we now combine the mental experience with the physical ability. We are now more like a rifle as we take aim at more specialized goals in both our work and play. We spend more time and gain satisfaction at what we are really good at.

40’sDecade of Change – By our mid-to-late 40’s everything not tied down is changing. Our kids are leaving home and our parents are needing help. Our jobs are mores stressed with additional responsibilities; we even have more pressure at church and in volunteer organizations. This is the decade of our emotions as the women battle menopause and the men, a mid-life crisis. Our hair, our weight, and our dreams are changing as we “zero in” even more on our desires. We add a scope to our rifles and do fewer activities, but stick to what we enjoy.

Next, we’ll conclude this overview by looking at the decades of the 50’s, 60’s, and 70’s. Just relax and enjoy the decade you’re in right now!

I hope you will take time this summer to encourage a recent graduate, give them a broad perspective on life, and agree to be the role model or mentor that they desire. Be available to them when they need a compass in the later years.

Enlarging my vision,

Kent

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About kenthumphreys
Kent Humphreys has been a business leader for over forty years. He also served as CEO of FCCI/Christ@Work for six years and now serves as their worldwide ambassador, speaking, writing, and mentoring young leaders. He continues to be active in distribution, private equities, and real estate. Kent and his wife Davidene have written six books together. They have three children and eight grand-children.

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