Man Plan, God Laugh



Dave Korba

Early in my professional career, I was unfulfilled and hit a wall of discontent that led me to a period of self-reflection and soul searching. During this introspective time, I created a new set of career goals, some of which were ambitious and idealistic. 

More than 35 years have passed since then, and with a nod to John Steinbeck and Robert Burns, I can attest, “The best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry.” Or, as my spiritual friends remind me, “Man plan, God laugh.” My subsequent career decisions have been more a series of reactive adjustments than a well-executed plan toward ambitious goals.

In our feature article about young game-changers, Nancy Riehle points out in the discussion or re-engineering education, “By the age of 39, today’s average high school graduate will have nine different jobs, half of which have not been invented yet.”

The educational and career path models of yesterday need to adapt to a changing world. Each of us is also forced to confront change in our personal lives and in the world around us. I’m now part of a generation that is nostalgic for the good old days that were oh-so-contemporary just a short 35 years ago—or as I remember it—yesterday.

As I observe the changing world and contemplate the next 35 years, I am in awe of the youthful game-changers stepping forward to impact the future on the local, regional and global stage. Teenagers and pre-teens are leading groundbreaking initiatives on gender equality, sustainability and education; starting eco-friendly companies; and running for political office. As a teen, I was not meeting with mayors or leading marches, I was too shy to even raise my hand in class. The future generations are stepping up as youthful social entrepreneurs, providing fresh hope for the future of our planet.

While our feature story highlights youthful game-changers impacting the world, it’s ultimately up to each of us to be the game-changers of our own lives. On page 29, Spero Lappas shares his perspective with those that want to change their inner world in search of true happiness.

My reminder to you remains consistent. As a first step toward our own personal well-being, and as a way to exhibit love and consideration toward all, always do your best in striving to feel good, live simply and laugh more.

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