Morning Mr. Collier; I hope all is well with you. When you get a moment would you mind answering a question?

What would you tell your 30 year old self today?

Well, first I’d have to ask myself what I’d be open to hearing/learning. I was/am a pretty stubborn guy but more importantly, learning often happens in layers or in levels that build on each other. If the teacher appears before the student is ready then much can be lost in the translation.

While I’m sure I’d have lots of practical advice on specific situations as they arose, generalized wisdom often comes across as generic, bland, or obvious. Dear Abby’s advice is generally common sense, folks just need to hear it, to have their gut instinct reinforced, to get validated. The benefit of a mentor is often just being a sounding board, someone to talk things out with; positive reinforcement, a steadying, comforting presence.

I think I’d be a good EQ coach, help build the team, have a lot of good insights re personnel issues, see emerging problems, encourage myself to deal with them sooner. Also, I had no mentors, I had no real idea where it was going, just doing what was in front of me. Knowing what was possible, having scouted the territory, I’d encourage myself on a more direct path; larger, newer communities sooner. I’m assuming that I’m not coming back with a crystal ball (don’t start construction, the Great Recession is coming!)

I did once burn myself out with too many years of 80 hour weeks (and, no, I’m not exaggerating in the least) and it took a few years to recover i.e. overall, I lost time trying to make time!

As always, I share what I most want and need to learn. – Nathan S. Collier