Power of Possibility
At the end of August, one of my long time pizza customers went through a devastating tragedy and lost their 14-year-old son to Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. It was a sad day for everyone and our heart went out to his family. All children are precious, but this boy made a huge impression at such a young age that his loss deeply touched the community.
Some of his friends wanted to hold an event in his honor. They wanted to do it around his 15th birthday so that his parents would have something positive happening around a very difficult time. They had a couple of concerns though. Due to their young age and limited experience, they were not sure if they could pull off an event in 6 weeks.
As some of you may be aware, in July I enrolled in Landmark’s Self Expression Leadership Program. We were tasked with creating a community project that fulfills a possibility – my possibility was to empower children. This is something very near and dear to my heart but how I was going to do this was beyond me!
One of the agreements of the program that really ignited a passion in me was:
“You will be skilled in transforming your environment. The people in your life will relate to you not as the past teaches them that you are, but as the new possibilities say that you are. The difference you make will contribute to the people and communities that matter most to you.”
When his friends conveyed their concerns, I knew that I had the choice:
a. The choice of staying in the world of ordinary where I have great ideas but I’m scared as to what others will think… especially if I fail!
b. The choice of leaping into the world of enrollment where I could take some action to empower these children and make a difference in the community.
I chose Option B (although I was very hesitant). I promised the kids that I would help them do whatever they wanted to do – so they decided to hold a memorial ball hockey tournament!
For anyone who has known me for any length of time, sports is not my forte! The thought of holding a tournament with a respectable turnout in six weeks wanted me to make a run for the hills! But then I asked myself, how amazing would be for these kids and this boy’s family if we could actually pull it off?. This thought was at the forefront as we worked on organizing the best ball hockey tournament in such a short timeframe.
To help us make this tournament a success, I knew I needed to enroll volunteers who had previous experience holding these types of events. Because of my lack of involvement with the community over the past few years (another long story which I will share later), I didn’t know where to turn. I gathered my courage and sent out a Facebook message to all my friends and acquaintances in Calgary. I shared the promise that I made to the children and the impact that it could have if we actually pulled it off! Fortunately, a couple of great individuals decided to help us out on this crazy journey!
Over the next six weeks we planned, ran into obstacles, reminded ourselves the outcome of possible success, overcame the obstacles, and moved on to the next action. On October 17, 2015, we held the “Hockey for Healing: Memorial Ball Hockey Tournament for Gursharn Johal“.
By focusing on what was possible, we accomplished the following:
Engaged over 2000 individuals through social media
Registered 19 teams for the tournament (15 before earlybird registration ended)
Tournament attended by over 300 spectators
Raised over $8650 for the Alberta Children’s Hospital Foundation
Media coverage on Red FM & Global TV
And most importantly, children who understood that they could make a difference!
Personally, I have gained so much more than I can put into words. I have a newfound sense of the power of community, an increased admiration in the power of our youth, an appreciation for hockey sticks (I never knew there were so many) and most of all, gratitude of the new friends I have gained along the way!
For anyone who feels that they are not living their life powerfully or not living the life they love, do something about it! Now’s the time! It’s not too late! Contact me and I can share with you how my life has transformed and how yours can as well if you choose!
It’s all about choice… so choose you!