What happens when you take a step back? It’s very powerful and can change the world. A single example can make a huge difference in our businesses and our lives. When Jason Barger approached me to discuss his book, I begged him immediately to join us on the Gnomedex stage. This is what our conference is all about – changing the world one person… one day – one STEP BACK – at a time.
Step Back From the Baggage Claim is a movement to help effect change. In Jason’s own words: “Change begins from the ground up. The pressure underneath the wings has to be greater than the pressure above the wings. Change begins with singular moments. Change can begin at the baggage claim and carry into our everyday lives. Change begins with you and me.”
The book is powerful, and the inspiration behind it is even more so. I hope you’ll take the time in your life to step back – and to spread that message to others.
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Gnomedex 2010 speaker Jason Barger is no ordinary traveler. Prior to writing his book Step Back From the Baggage Claim, he spent a week flying over six thousand miles to seven different cities. During this adventure, he never once stepped foot out of an airport. He spent more than 10,000 minutes studying people from all four corners of the United States, observing what our airport experiences can teach us about life.
The funny and inspiring stories found within the pages of his book remind us to step back and really see our lives – moment by moment. How much of your life is spent doing what is “normal” and routine? Are you doing things the same way as you did yesterday? How much of our time is spent ignoring possibilities because we think we already know the answers?
We all tend to get caught up at times in a fast-moving world crowded with goals, hopes, dreams and plans. It doesn’t matter how old you are, what your job title is or how much money you make, you stand around that metaphorical baggage claim in the hope of claiming certain things for your life. You have a choice each day, Jason believes, to choose how you “want to navigate our way through the crowded obstacles and what spirit we’ll carry with us along our path.”
Before taking off to sleep in airports and observe human behavior, Barger led over 1,700 people to construct 125 houses internationally for families living in poverty. He also implemented the Streets Mission Project to serve the homeless on the streets of Columbus, Ohio. In 2004, he was one of five people in Columbus, Ohio, to receive a Jefferson Award, a national award given to “ordinary people doing extraordinary things.”
There are still tickets available for Gnomedex 10. The conference will again be held in Seattle, WA from August 19 – August 21st, 2010. We hope to see you there.