• shane@countryexec.com
  • Seguin, Texas
Life Goals And The Professional Satisfaction Derived

Life Goals And The Professional Satisfaction Derived

I’ve been a hard charger most of my life. I’m blue collar to my core, and have always been a roll up my sleeves and get after it kind of guy. It’s ironic this mindset led to a white collar career. You’ll never convince me a blue collar approach doesn’t have a direct line to success for many reasons. That said, I am proud to say I reached a professional goal early in 2023. One that took an inordinate amount of time. Twenty-seven years and four months to be exact, but who’s counting…? In January 2023 my title changed from Director of IT to Chief Information Officer (CIO). It was a change in nomenclature only, but it meant a lot personally. I’m going to elaborate why, hence I am calling this post life goals and the professional satisfaction derived.

Life Goals - The Country Executive

Achieving Life Goals

In my very first post on this site I admitted as a young man I had no idea what I was going to do in the long term. Ironically enough there was no life goal. I was fortunate the Air Force gave me my career. The military is great for providing the foundation for life goals. Life success I would call it. What you choose to do with the opportunity is purely on the individual. I like to think I ran with every opportunity bestowed upon me, and consider myself fortunate for all the good things that resulted ever since. I am filled with gratitude for this reason and so much more.

In my late 20’s I began taking classes in earnest towards an undergrad degree using my GI Bill. I had taken a few college courses here and there, but I really began to dig in about that time. My life goal back then was just to finish a four year degree. In February 2011 I did finish, and almost immediately my life goal became to earn a graduate degree. That achievement came in November 2015. Then came the PMP certification, followed by the CISM, CGCIO, and a few others. I never stopped pushing forward despite working full time and managing life in general.

Playing The Long Game

Life goals are different for everyone. Some can be quick, others not so much. Achieving my life goals required an enormous investment. Twelve years of personal time on top of working full time in the IT career field, which can often and easily turn into more than your standard forty hour work week. There’s something to be said for perseverance when it comes to life goals. Possessing the ability to stay on course while managing day to day life can be a super power.

As the years of experience piled up, it began to feel as though I would never reach the life goals I had set for myself when it came to my career. I worked in middle management for what felt like a long time. In 2018 my current employer invited me to become their executive over technology.

It absolutely was a step up from my previous role, but not the professionally driven life goal I had been working towards. I wanted to be a CIO, and while I was thrilled to be offered the opportunity to become a director I immediately set out to begin proving my value to justify the next step. Very likely the final step when it comes to my career.

Life Goals 2 - The Country Executive

Why It Meant So Much

Admittedly it feels silly for a job title to actually resonate to a high degree for me. It really shouldn’t and I know that, yet here we are. Achieving that life goal really was just that, a life goal. If you’ve read a few of my postings then you know I’m from the other side of the tracks. That side of me has never changed. I am still and always have been that guy from small town Texas.

The underlying premise of creating this site was to pass on a lifetime of experience pertaining to overcoming the curveballs life throws at you. Life is hard. It’s not fair either, but if the desire exists in your heart then nobody should ever accept what life gives them. I’m living proof that hurdles can be overcome. Success is waiting for anyone willing to commit to what it takes to achieve it.

As I have stated many times I am not special. What I lack in some areas I make up for with a strong will and a willingness to be all in. It is true neither of my parents finished high school. It is also true I grew up in what most would consider a lower to middle class situation. We had everything we needed but not much else. It’s just the way it was.

Life Goals And Gratitude

I always knew I wanted more out of life, but it is absolutely correct to state that I appreciate so much about my roots. Gratitude comes easy when you know what the other side feels like. I can be a little weird at times because I simply cannot relate to some things that are considered normal in society. I don’t look down or think less of any of these normalcies in life. All that was needed was to learn who I was as a person, accept it, and not worry about what anyone else thinks.

I’m a country guy obviously, but I was fortunate to experience much of the world as a young man. That in itself was a life goal way back when. I wanted to know what it was like outside the East Texas bubble I grew up in and have always been so appreciative for the opportunity to do so. I truly have so much to be thankful for in my life.

Life Goals 3 - The Country Executive

Life Goals Conclusion

That is how I want to live my life. Appreciate everything, the little and big things. Celebrate achievement and any life goal attained. Enjoy today because tomorrow is never promised, but keep grinding beyond that. For me that is the best chance I have to look back and not regret anything. Take life head on and just live baby!

I have one more goal left that is not really based on a milestone in my career. One day I would like to go back to my old high school and deliver the graduation commencement speech. I suppose it doesn’t have to be my school, but I feel compelled to let the young folks growing up in rural areas that they too have incredible opportunities waiting for them.

The world has changed and maybe not everyone needs to hear it, but I know there’s some out there that do. Maybe that’ll be the next life goal achieved, or maybe it won’t. For certain I’m going to keep pushing forward and I hope you do as well. Just live baby! Until next time thank you for reading, and please take care of yourself and the ones you love.

The Country Executive

2 thoughts on “Life Goals And The Professional Satisfaction Derived

    • Author gravatar

      Congratulations, this was a very inspiring post actually, because I’m currently in the ‘I don’t know what I’ll do next’ moment of my career

      • Author gravatar

        Thank you Petra, I’m so happy my story inspired you! Keep pushing forward and I suspect the realization of what’s next in your career will come. Good luck!

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