04 May Shaped by The Force- A May the 4th Be With You Tribute
Rich and I both fancy ourselves Jedi warriors, defenders of truth and justice throughout the universe.
Yep. I’ve said it out loud. We are total geeks.
But I’d rather geek out with my best friend and play around everyday to come up with ideas of how we can serve the galaxy than box myself in doing work that doesn’t connect to the deepest parts of who I am. We seriously have so much fun.
I’ve always been this way. So has Rich. We made those risky entrepreneurial choices at the start of our careers and have been guided by the Force ever since. (yes, I am going to keep using Star Wars references quite seriously throughout this piece so get used to it)
The Force brought us together years ago when we met on the set of a film shoot, Rich directing me as on-camera talent. There was an ease and flow to the work and we instantly liked each other, in the kindred-spirit kind of way. We could sense the Force in each other.
Since then there have been countless conversations over coffee about Yoda and lightsabers and mourning the loss of the Star Wars museum here in Chicago- we’re still not over it.
I’ve been thinking about why we love Star Wars. It’s the pure joy and sense of wonder it brings us. Which is especially needed when building a new business and when defending the universe from the Dark Side.
Star Wars embedded itself deep in my psyche and imagination back when I saw the first movie in theaters at age 6! It was my very first movie theater experience and awakened a love of adventure and desire to find and fight for the things in which I believe. It awakened a sense of purpose and justice and spoke to my inner Jedi though I was just a Padawan at the time. And it gave me an understanding of courage for facing things I fear.
Rich would tell you the same, how his childhood memories of the first Star Wars movie made a lasting impression. And spoke to his imagination sparking a love of creativity and storytelling that he has honed over the years since. Though I do like to remind him he was 10 when the first movie came out compared to my 6 year old self. My youth and innocence are most likely the reason some of my Jedi skills are more sharply attuned than his, so he shouldn’t feel bad about it.
There was an ad that ran years ago, I think it was a Patagonia ad. I still have the magazine clipping of it that reads,
When you cried during It’s a Wonderful Life,
Part of you knew you were onto something.
There was a time when you knew, really knew
that chaining up a dog was mean and no adult could tell you otherwise.
We begin with our compass dead center,
but slowly we stop trusting it
and it gets off track.
We can fix it.
This isn’t about liberating dogs or crying at movies,
it is about putting your heart where it belongs,
being the person you know you were meant to be,
the one you probably were in the 3rd grade.
We were meant to be Jedis. There’s no doubt in my mind. There is nothing better than those moments when Rich and I are playing (or some may call it working) and it feels like we could be 12 years old having this conversation, making this joke or debating about the best martial arts techniques.
There is such life force in joy and laughter and play! And a freedom when we allow ourselves to be our 3rd grade self in our adult bodies.
But honestly, I can sometimes take myself a little too seriously like most adults. Luckily, I have my bud Rich who brings me back to reality through this sense of humor and Yoda quotes of course.
One of my Yoda favorites- “Know themselves Padawans must, before a unique lightsaber they can build.” Ahhh, he is so wise that Yoda!
Building a lightsaber is one of the biggest honors of any Jedi’s existence and their absolute heart and soul go into its creation much like creating a life and work that you love. All Jedis go through the very challenging journey of knowing themselves and connecting to their truest self and facing their fears before they get to make their lightsabers.
This my friends is a beautiful template for life. The magic of all things Star Wars is what spoke to both of us deeply in our youth and what we as Star Wars fans continue to carry into our adult years. And, of course all the fight scenes with lightsabers are sooooo cool, come on!
So this post is a celebration of bringing our deepest joys and a sense of wonder to our work and our lives. A humble thank you to my fellow Jedi Master Rich for playing along with me. And a call to all you other Jedi out there, no matter what stage of your training or what challenges you face.
This is the day we celebrate the Force- May the 4th be with you! Remember to honor your fellow Jedi friends today, thank them for the support they offer and keep forging ahead with joy in your heart and the Force guiding you.
Together Rich and I continue building our Big Breath Studios lightsaber, cause we fancy ourselves Jedi warriors, defenders of truth and justice throughout the universe.
Also we found some great tools and learned some valuable lessons during our Jedi training that we want to bring to you.
And we love to play Star Wars, usually Rich is Luke (of course) and I waiver between Hans Solo and Ray, but we are always Jedi.
May the Force be with you.