Tuesday, March 1, 2011


I got a haircut today.  A new barber I'd never met before was in the shop.  Like many barbers, he was a fountain of conversation.

He recounted an incident that happened when he was a young barber in Payson, Arizona.  An old cowboy came in periodically for a "cowboy cut."  It was regular in most ways, but he didn't want his mustache, nose or ear hairs or eybrows trimmed.  Reason:  they helped keep the flies out.

One day. the old cowboy was a bit pensive and commented that if he had his life to live over again, he'd "just do it."  The young barber asked him what he meant, whereupon he said that the greatest regret of his life was that he didn't have the courage to "just do" many of the things he often wanted to do.  Now, it was too late.

The young barber took that counsel to heart and when an urge like traveling up and down the Mississipi came over him, he just did it.  He has now settled down in a house he owns in Camp
Verde, but his fondest memories are of the many things he courageously set out to do because of that old cowboy's advice.  In all cases, he survived and gained from each experience.

No cowboy gave me that advice, but as I look back on my life, the things that give me greatest satisfaction with my life are those things I "just did."

Pulling up stakes and going off to Ambassador College at twenty-one was the first big one.  I had many reasons not to do that.  I could have had a far different and perhaps much more secure future by staying on and inheriting the family ranch.  Fear of the unknown could have kept me from taking that step.  I know, Ambassador College was no bargain as educational institutions go, but it gave me a college education and writing and editing experience I'm utilizing right now at this computer.  It gave me a confidence in myself and an appreciation of what I could do if I just set out to do it.

When my career with the college and church came to an abrupt end, I was faced with the fearsome prospect of finding a job in the commercial world or establishing my own business after floundering around for a couple of years.  Establishing a business is no piece of cake, but I found a way to do it.  I recount this experience in my book:  http://www.hwarmstrong.com/believing-the-unbelievable.pdf .

When my wife divorced me, I was faced with living alone or trying to find another partner.  I set off into the new and intimidating world of singles organizations and ended up in square dancing where I soon found a compatible mate.

Life in the Los Angeles area became less and less ideal for a number of reasons and I again walked away and moved to Phoenix.  Establishing a new business and just surviving involved more fearsome obstacles, but, again, I survived and eventually prospered. 

After many years in Phoenix, becoming a widower and again finding a mate in the square dance world, life there became less and less desireable.  So, another move.  This time, to Cottonwood, AZ where I expect to spend what remains of my life.

Included along the way are the memories of two trips to Hawaii that we could have easily said we really couldn't afford and just frittered away the money some other way and a wonderful trip to Louisiana and several days in New Orleans.

I haven't covered all the many compulsive things I've done that constitute my fondest memories.  What I've recounted just illustrate how important it is not to let fear of the unknown limit us.

There is a time to "JUST DO IT!"

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