Life is often compared to a a book, an epic novel that runs the course of time with its highs and lows. We ask a lot of questions about this book. What will be our next verse? What roles do we play? How about others? Most commonly, we look at our book and wonder when one chapter ends and another begins. Transitions and changes in our seasons become common worries as we move through life. When is it that our time in a place or at a job is over? In my case, my departure from a job to follow my purpose was sudden, at least on the surface, yet it was hinted at in every page that came before. Still, if we knew when a chapter was definitively over, wouldn't that be like reading ahead in a book? Wouldn't that rob us of the joy of the journey, the spices of life?
Josh Capeder has learned about the chapters in his life, about how discovering the end of one and the beginning of another is a matter of living and experience. There is no reading ahead in life, no cheating of the series of events. Rather than rack our brains with the wonders of a new chapter or where that should be, Josh is living. He is working and experiencing Charleston. Does that make this beautiful city the end point of his journey? No, it certainly doesn't. Talking to Josh you just know he will move on from here at some point. He is a seeker, a student, an artist and a wanderer. The introduction to him came from Frank Martinez, one of my favorite connections and coffee buddies. Frank and I have parallel journeys in life, and it is wonderful to share those steps with someone like Josh.
When you first meet Josh, you are overwhelmed with tranquility and peace, with this sense that he has discovered something in his spirit for which he has no name, but that makes the world a place to experience with calm. He is present, always attentive and curious. That said, Josh is not a man who wastes words. Far from it. There is an economy of language and sound to him, as though he spends his time deciding whether words are worth being said. I don't get the impression that he seeks to fill space. I can't lie, this tranquility and sense of intention about him makes Josh a very interesting guy. He notices the beads on my arm and asks if I am a practitioner of yoga. I am not, but Josh is. For the past three years, Josh has studied yoga intensely. He truly loves it. You can watch his face light up as he anticipates the yoga class he will attend when we are done with our meeting. He is even debating training to become a teacher. For Josh yoga holds a special tranquility and he laments how something meant to be so personal in practice occasionally turns into a competition. I tell him about my experience of the same thing with writing, how some writers seek personal glory so much they forget to enjoy the work of others.
This is not uncommon unfortunately. How many times do we encounter people who spend more time telling us how to do something than appreciating the effort we have put into something? It is the tragic offspring of a scarcity mentality that we seek to be the individual best in an area, without fail. In fact, when we see someone else surpassing us, or doing something we wish we had thought of, we often take effort to guide that project on the course we want for it as opposed to where it should be. That is unless we accept that path of personal practice, of walking our own road and seeking contentment. Josh has not mastered this path, but it is certainly his. I like Josh's viewpoint on the world. He talks about taking joy in others work, about finding personal mastery unrelated to others achievements and about moving forward to find your next chapter. Josh is young and yet I cannot wait to see what his next chapter brings. What will he do? Where will he end up?
Better yet...where will you?
Favorite Dinosaur: Ankylosaurus
Why: He was a super turtle, a vegetarian who would and could defend himself but didn't try to hurt anyone.