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Blue chips

Our daughter graduated from college last weekend. It made me think about my life and what I want to leave behind.

It occurred to me again that time is our most valuable resource and we generally do not use it well.

There is a lyric in a song l listened to a while ago – it said that when I was a child, a day seemed like a year and now a year seems like a day.

I agree.

We are all part of the circle of life.

Our parents and children are part of it, as are we all.

Time marks major events in our life and the many transitions – from our birth; youth; adulthood; parenthood; loss of parents, family and friends; to our own deaths.

This is the circle of life.

Steve Jobs said that time and death makes us strive to move forward in our lives. To focus on what is important.

Focus on our blue chip ideas, goals, projects, relationships and events to create our legacy.

I thought about these last weekend, as I have through many of my times of reflection at WVU and in West Virginia. For this realization of the importance of this reflection, I am grateful.

Here are my blue chips:

  • I understand my priorities – personal growth, family, spirituality, job and fun. These are my blue chip areas.
  • I am trying to stop wasting time worrying about the little stuff that mostly we make up in our mind.
  • I am trying to focus on being here now. Today and now is the only reality.
  • I want to create a family and work place that provides love and psychological safety for the great people I have in my life.
  • I am protecting my time for the things I do well and love to do as much as possible. I want to empower the right talented people in our family with the other important work that needs to be done. Tom Peters calls this making a to don’t list.
  • I am reading a lot and worrying less about the constant noise of media and entertainment.
  • I am enjoying walking a lot, listening to music and enjoying nature – I am appreciating the connection of all things. My eyes have been open for a while, but perhaps, I am just starting to see.
  • I am committed to staying healthy to be fully independent and contributing for as long as I can. Remember basic plane safety – oxygen mask on you first before helping others.
  • I am also realizing that personal connections of friends, community and family are the most important and most fulfilling.
  • I am committed to thinking big, never promising what we can’t or won’t deliver and contributing to the rebirth of a great West Virginina.

I want to finish with one of my favorite poems by Robert Frost, which reflects another blue chip area for me - what I feel is following a destiny path back home.


Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,

And sorry I could not travel both

And be one traveler, long I stood

And looked down one as far as I could

To where it bent in the undergrowth;


Then took the other, as just as fair,

And having perhaps the better claim,

Because it was grassy and wanted wear;

Though as for that the passing there

Had worn them really about the same,


And both that morning equally lay

In leaves no step had trodden black.

Oh, I kept the first for another day!

Yet knowing how way leads on to way,

I doubted if I should ever come back.


I shall be telling this with a sigh

Somewhere ages and ages hence:

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—

I took the one less traveled by,

And that has made all the difference.