After 3 days of the John Maxwell Team International Certification Event, I have a lot to process. Certainly there are some personal changes to make, as well as a lot of good stuff for a project I have looming head. All of that leaves me with a lot to blog about.
Today, I will once again board a train (a coworker called me “old fashioned”) and begin that long trip back home. When I miss home, and that is often, I wish I had flown, but with so much to process I am glad I took the train. I’ll find a nice spot to settle in with my notes and a new book or two and begin making some plans.
One thing I am left thinking about is something that was said during lunch. People were going around the table sharing what they hope to do with all of this training. When it was my turn, I explained my experience in ministry, my depression breakdown, and my recovery and how I hope to go in to churches and tell my story.
“Is there a market for that?” One man asked.
“Every time I tell my story,” I replied, “I am contacted by someone that tells me that after hearing my story they began getting the help they need.”
“Sure, “ the man said, “it helps that one person, but I don’t think its a business model.”
I began to wonder if this man was paying much attention to John Maxwell.
“Well, I also have a book being published along these lines. Books can promote speaking gigs and speaking gigs promote books.”
He shrugged and then left the table.
“Hey,” The man sitting next to me said as people began leaving the table. “Yesterday a friend of mine called me. He’s really worried about this guy he knows and he was asking me for advice. This guys is really depressed, and I mean REALLY depressed. They are worried about him but nobody knows how to help.”
We spent the next half hour discussing depression and ways to get help. Then he left to make a phone call to pass along what I had said.
Every. single. time.
1 in 5 people struggle with Depression or Anxiety and 80% of those people never seek help. So just to be clear, I am not interested in whether or not this dream of mine is a business. I want to tell my story as often as I can to as many people as I can. If it makes a little impact every time, then eventually it makes a big impact.
Keep making a little impact!
Aaron Davis is an author, speaker, and life coach. His novel, "Street Preacher" is available now and his memoir, "Baggage Claim: my journey through depression, ministry, and finding peace" will be released in the Summer of 2017! If you would like to have Aaron speak to your church, ministry, or organization, contact him here.
I am going on a trip.
Those familiar with the Baggage Claim project will know that one goal of that project was to prepare myself to be a professional speaker and life coach. I chose to go through the John Maxwell Group for that preparation, and it is time for me to go to the certification event in Orlando. However, I chose a rather unusual way to get there.
I am taking the train. Taking the train is not unusual. Lots of people take trains everyday. However, taking the train from St. Louis to Orlando is probably a bit odd. The route goes from St Louis to Chicago, then to Washington DC, and then to Orlando. When I tell people this, everyone asks “why?”
The train is cheaper than flying, a few hundred less at the time I booked my tickets. It made some financial sense (although if I were employed at the time of booking, I would not have opted for the longer trip). From what I hear, the train involves less stress than flying. Bonus!
Driving would have been cheaper and shorter, but recovery has a cost. In learning to make healthy choices regarding depression, I realize that I should not be alone in a car for 15 hours. There is more to this reason, I understand, and perhaps I will write more on it soon.
In the end, my wife and I decided that this train trip could accomplish a few things. First, it gets me to Orlando to complete the certification process. Next, it gives me some down time. This down time will be used for reading, writing, and processing everything this conference will be teaching. Finally, it fulfills a long held desire of mine to ride the rails. I promise to be dignified and reserved on the platform, but inside, I’ll be like this:
There is the added bonus of getting to visit my brother and some old friends along the way. I will be posting lots of updates and travelogs so stay tuned! It promises to be quite a week!
Author, Parent, Husband, Christ-follower