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Oftentimes, my life as a disabled person feels like stop and go traffic. The setting has to be just right in order for me to work my hardest, which means the involvement of other people and a relatively quiet atmosphere. For example, I can’t have a meaningful in-depth conversation at a crowded bar.  There are not many things that I can do for myself.  The things that I can do myself often involve more effort than other people.  I can reply briefly to an email but I cannot write a whole blog post.  I was on Facebook talking to my sister, just saying hi, and she asked me a question which involved more than a two word answer, so I had to call her. As you probably assumed, I can’t fill my time with things like texting and emailing random people on Facebook.

Even though it bothers me that I cannot perform these little tasks, it is a blessing in disguise. I have a lot of time just to think and dream.  I often get bored.  When I get bored, I start thinking.  Either I think about everything I can’t do or I think about what I’m going to do.  Obviously the latter is more productive because that's when I know, good ideas.

One time I was at USC and it was a fall sunny day (oops for a second there I thought I was writing a novel). Anyway, I was on my way to the library when I ran into my marketing professor Jim Ellis, who is now the Dean.  He asked me, where are you going? I replied, I’m on the way to meet my study assistant.  Jim remarked, you must be very busy.  At first I agreed, nodding my head (there I go again!).  Then I remarked, you know what, Jim? I’m never busy enough, because when I’m not busy, I start to think and you know, that’s not a good thing.  He started laughing and I said, Jim, I’m not joking.

People ask me why I work as hard as I do.  Honestly, the main reason is I hate being bored and I love action.  What scares me the most is that I will live in the land of what ifs.  What if I didn’t have a disability? What if I could type? What if I could drive my own car? (OK, that’s enough. I don’t want to bum you out or, more importantly, myself.) The more time that I am doing stuff the less time I have to think about how handicapped I am.

The way that I write my books and this blog is, I write it in my head over and over again and when I have someone there to help me, we write. I oftentimes get my ideas in a crowded restaurant where my friends cannot hear me and I am forced withdraw and go inward.

I believe that truly successful people like Donald Trump, Bill Gates, and Warren Buffet have enough money to do whatever they want, but they’re still trying hard.  I assume that this is because they get bored. I cannot imagine Bill Gates on the beach (he’s too pasty anyway). He loves building Microsoft as well as his foundation.  Success is fun.  People like Gates, Trump, and Buffet really understand that. By the way (as the kids say, BTW), one day I had my manager help me write this blog in the morning when she came in and I then had her make calls for a couple hours.  In these couple of hours, I worked on the computer a little, and was kind of bored. But guess what?  I had time to think about this blog and when she came back in, I dictated this additional paragraph.

I believe that any successful person should just withdraw from the world and think about life--what they want, and how to achieve it.  Take an hour a week just to withdraw, turn off the cell phone...and just think.

Timelapse - Lighthouse (Oct 2012) from IMK Digital Multimedia on Vimeo.

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