I lived the true American dream because I was able to pursue what I set as my goals at a very young age. -Mario Andretti
This past weekend, we celebrated one of my favorite holidays – Independence Day. It’s the day we celebrate the freedoms we enjoy as Americans, made possible for us by those leaders who went before us. It’s the day we celebrate the idea of the American dream.
What exactly is the “American dream”? It’s the idea that anyone can come to this country, work hard, make a difference in the world, and leave a legacy for those who follow.
You don’t hear the names of other countries associated with the word “dream” like you do with America.
Why is that? I believe it is because of two things: freedom and opportunity.
Freedom is the permit for a dream, the soil in which it takes root. And opportunity is the platform on which to build it.
We are in a time of great change in our country, and I, for one, am not ready to give up on the great American dream. There is much we can’t control – we can’t change who other people are and what they do – but we can control OURSELVES. We can’t make our leaders great, but we can be great leaders within our individual realms of influence. We can’t make decisions for our leaders, but we can make solid decisions that affect our lives, our families, and our local communities. We may not be able to influence our leaders in the nation’s capital (except by exercising our right to vote), but we can influence ourselves to be the best leaders we can be.
And maybe this is really the heart of the American dream – not centered on the government and its actions – but centered on individuals and their actions. The American dream is really about the “little people” who do great things.
I have to believe that if enough of us plant those seeds of serving, leading, and doing the right things, the American dream still has a chance to thrive.
Are you doing all you can – in your life, your family, and your community – to keep the American dream alive? Join me as, one by one, we ignite a leadership revolution. This is my passion – and I trust it is yours as well.