How to Become a Hero c.j. hayden
   How to Become a Hero
   You Are the Champion the World Is Waiting For

   C.J. Hayden, MCC

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My summer vacation: three weddings and a book 

Six of my closest friends are getting married this summer -- to each other that is. Between the 4th of July and Labor Day, three couples who are part of my intimate circle of friends are all tying the knot. That means three weddings, three bridal showers, and three bachelor parties.

My sweetheart Dave is the best man in one wedding, he and I are groomsman and bridesmaid in a second, and I'm helping to organize the bridal showers for two of them. Add in fittings for our formal wear, two rehearsal dinners, and buying new shoes. Don't forget buying nine presents for the weddings, showers, and parties, plus cards, paper, and ribbon, and then there are party games and snacks. I took out half the clothes in my closet to see if I could actually assemble the seven party outfits I'll need without repeating myself (there will be photographs, of course), since I couldn't bear the thought of going shopping again. Oh, and I forgot to mention, two of the weddings are being held out of town, one of them in Ireland!

In the middle of all this hoopla, I'm revising the 250-page manuscript for Get Hired NOW!, due to the publisher before wedding number two. And serving my clients, teaching my students, arranging my fall calendar of workshops, speaking engagements, and interviews... and one last little project, trying to buy a house.

At one point, overwhelmed by piles of wrapping paper, manuscript pages, plane reservations, and real estate listings, I exclaimed, "Where did my life go?" forgetting for the moment that this is my life.

I could look at the overwhelm of this summer as an enormous burden. It's certainly tempting to complain about the constant whirlwind of activity and endless to-do lists. There's no question that my resources are being stretched to the limit. That's why it's so helpful to pause for a moment and count my blessings.

Isn't it amazing that I have so many friends that six of them are getting married at once? That these people love me enough to invite me to be a part of their special celebrations? That I will soon be seeing my third book in print? That I have so many clients and students and speaking engagements, and enough money to buy a house? What a great life!

In my steps for becoming a hero, the final step is "Staying the Course." At the moment, the key to this for me is gratitude. Baha'u'llah, who founded the Baha'i Faith, said, "A thankful person is thankful under all circumstances. A complaining soul complains even if he lives in paradise." It seems these days that I am living in paradise. But somehow I had pictured more time to play the harp.


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