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What Do You Choose? – inspired by Steve Jobs

Along with the rest of the technophilic world, I am saddened by the death of Steve Jobs.

He was an innovator, a modern day Leonardo da Vinci, a creative revolutionary whose goal was to change the whole world for the better. There’s no doubt that he was a spectacular genius who accomplished exactly that.

Steve Jobs was known for his meticulous attention to detail, his extraordinary passion, and his obsession with breaking the rules, pushing society forward, changing the world forever. steve jobs

His legacy goes far beyond a product line. Everything Steve Jobs did, everything he accomplished encouraged others to make their own way, to stop conforming to what is and start creating what could be. That is his legacy.

In the months before his passing, Steve Jobs had been working with an author to compose an official biography. Several news outlets reported that his motivation for the biography was to leave his story for his children. It is being reported that he said,

I want my kids to know me. I wasn’t there for them, and I want them to understand why.

I don’t know Steve Jobs. I don’t know his four children. I don’t know what any of them thought about his devotion to his company, his vision for America and the world, or his unavailability in their lives.

It sounds like, in his last days, he wished he’d been around more for his kids.

My own confidence has been weak lately. I’ve questioned myself, whether my continuing to be at home with my kids is the right choice, whether I should be accepting offers to travel the country and speak to groups or consult with large corporations, whether I should be offering more workshops.

Steve Job’s words pierced my heart like an arrow.

He made a difference to the world. He revolutionized entire industries as a matter of daily practice. He was great. He created. He designed. He inspired legions of devoted followers, myself included.

Steve Jobs chose the world, sacrificing his family’s share of his time, and the world will be forever grateful.

I make a different choice. I choose my kids, possibly sacrificing my contribution to the world. I choose to raise people. I know my children completely, and they know me as well. I choose to wipes bottoms and pick up toys and play and teach. I create and inspire, but on a minute scale.

There is no judgement here. Every person makes decisions based on his or her own priorities, and the world needs great leaders to sacrifice their personal time for the good of the group.

There aren’t enough hours in the day, enough days in the week, to be a creative or business genius and an immersed and involved Â  parent.

What do you choose?

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© 2011 – 2018, Tara Ziegmont. All rights reserved.

7 thoughts on “What Do You Choose? – inspired by Steve Jobs”

  1. I’ve been thinking of this a lot lately. Being someone who is not married, who does not (and possibly can not) have children… but wanting these things makes this choice so much more difficult. I want to know what it’s like to be married – to care and love someone so much that I cannot imagine my life without them – and to experience raising a child… to see the first laugh, the first steps, hear the first words.

    But instead, God has a different plan for my life. I’m not sure what it is… but maybe it’s to change the world.

  2. Thank you for this post. I choose to be with my kids also. I have times where I wonder if it is the best thing for our family, but my husband and I agree that this is the best place for me for now. I definitely do not want to be at the other end of my life, wishing I had spent more time with them!

  3. I nearly wrote a post similar to this. Then the kids got up and ruined it. 😉 I thought it was incredibly sad that Steve Jobs had to tell his story to a writer for the sake of his kids. I’m sure his kids were brokenhearted over his passing, and my heart goes out to them. When my time comes, I hope my kids will have no bitterness to grapple with, as I suspect they may. I hope I won’t have to explain to them why something else seemed more important at the time. Jobs made it clear that his children were his greatest accomplishment, in his eyes, but his dreams were more urgent and took him away from them. I couldn’t live with that choice. I’d rather die poor, frankly.

  4. I didn’t choose initially. I was laid-off from my director level non-profit job which I LOVED and was darn good at right around when I found out I was pregnant. I thought the world was crashing around me. It ended up being the biggest blessing. Now I’ve been home with my son for over two years (including the pregnancy) and I wouldn’t trade it – but I don’t think I would have even considered it if it hadn’t been forced on me at first.

  5. I think I am trying to do both which is nearly impossible so I’m falling short in both categories. I am trying to do too many things and am constantly trying to find a balance. I want to be there for my kids. They are my priority. Then again, I also want to leave a mark in society. Hmmm, it’s quite a conundrum we are all in! : ) Thanks for this post!

  6. When my Dad was sick, right before he passed away, he told me that he wished he had spent more time with his family. He told me to concentrate on the truly important things in life. The minute I had kids I put my “career” away. I still have a job, but it is not the number one focus of my live. It is not my driving factor. As someone that has lost a parent I know the only thing you really want after they are gone is memories. That is what you hold on to and what settles your heart at night. I want my children to be able to look back and remember the part I played in their lives, not the part I played in the world.

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