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Grand Rapids, MI

​Hi.  I'm Mike Dokter.  I've ridden the coat tails of others.  I hang out with people who are much more talented and much smarter than I am.  I consistently work to learn as much as I can from these people so I can help others along their journey as well.  

These are the days of our lives...

What I think...

These are the days of our lives...

Mike Dokter

It’s funny how things change.  Everything moves and progresses.  Everything…business ideas, industries, and political influence all run their course.  I wrote once about contentment and complacency.  I may resurrect it for this blog but now is not the time.  In summary; contentment results from peace and complacency results from fear.  There, now you don’t have to read 1300 additional words.  I think that accepting the fact that things change and learning how to live with it is another way to look at how to be content.  I’m still struggling with how to do that.  It’s probably because I never took The Birds seriously.

It seems like just a few years ago I was graduating high school.  It’s hard to believe that last year was my 10 year reunion.  Since then I got married, divorced, ran marathons, bought a house, lost 50k in a bad business, been hired, been fired, won and lost major business competitions and graduated from my first round of college.  It seems odd to list those things.  I think somewhat because it seems like more than I expected considering how I started.  When was the last time you looked at what you’ve done in the last 10 years?  Has a lot changed?  I bet it has.  Things change all the time despite our wishes and desires.

So how can one handle it?   What does one do when a chapter in their life closes and a new one begins?  I don’t really know how to answer that and I personally struggle with the need to have everything in life work out the way I want because, well, that’s the way it’s supposed to happen…right?  Sometimes it sucks when a really great chapter ends and when another questionable chapter begins.  We don’t know what the next chapter brings and if it will be exciting, boring, painful, or joyous.  It’s quite terrifying.  One thing I’ve found though is that ending one chapter and beginning another is extremely important in forming who you are as a person, business or anything else you are trying to be.  It’s all part of your story and I think that everyone has a story worth telling.  That’s part of the reason I do what I do, I like helping people tell their story. 

I don’t believe in coincidences.  Things happen for a reason and many times we don’t know what that reason is until years down the road.  I have no idea why I’ve been granted some of the experiences I have been fortunate enough to participate in.  Why did I fail so miserably at some of them?  Maybe it was to teach me humility.  I know I sometimes need that.  Maybe it was to show people how to gracefully lose.  I tried to do that but probably came up short.  Maybe I just failed all together because failure is the most important learning experience there is and I just needed to fail so someday I can help others through their failure.  Maybe one of the people I met in the midst of my experiences will need me to help them one day or I will need help from them.  Who knows…things change.

Regardless, I think it’s important to allow room for growth in everything we do.  How can and does one grow as a person or business from the experience of change?  I think the best answer I have for that is that we all need to participate.  Life happens with or without us, good and bad, but one thing I can be sure of is that we will never have any type of victory or success if we don’t play.  There is a famous quote from Wayne Gretzky that I am sure most of you have seen hanging on a poster in a sales office.  He said, “I miss 100% of the shots I don’t take.”  It’s unfortunate that this extremely intelligent quote has become such a cliché.  I once worked in a sales office where a manager thought he was being original by making about 10 posters and hanging them in strategic places.  Let’s put aside the ridiculousness of sales managers for a minute and actually think about how this applies to the point.  If we don’t participate in our life, our story, we lose.  Everything that happens to us contributes to our brand, our business, our life, our family and our story.  Dan Millman coined the phrase, “There are no ordinary moments.”  Think about that for a minute…ok, now read it again.  Your story is extraordinary.  Go tell it and see what happens.  Oh, and if you need help, I know a guy…

P.S.  The Birds plagiarized.