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"We are the protagonists of our stories called life, and there is no limit to how high we can fly."

PHD. MBA. MHS. Type rated on A350, A330, B777, B747-400, B747-200, B757, B767, B737, B727. International Airline Pilot / Author / Speaker. Dedicated to giving the gift of wings to anyone following their dreams. Supporting Aviation Safety through training, writing, and inspiration. Fighting for Aviation Safety and Airline Employee Advocacy. Safety Culture and SMS change agent.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Pulled in Many Directions...

Monday Motivation:

Concerns from a from a future pilot...

"I have dreams and I want to fly... But my mother say's this... My father say's that... my Uncle suggests this...What am I supposed to do? I am not giving up!"

There will always be people (family and friends) trying to help by telling us what they think we should do with our lives. Not to harm or confuse us, but to help us because they love us and want the best. But the reality is... their best may not be what we want for ourselves. This is the time to ask yourself... 

Whose life is it anyway?

The way I see it... you are a beautiful flower with petals of hope, future, dreams, success, etc. You are in the process of blooming into the person you can be. What you need is support to help you grow...water, sunshine, soil, nutrients, etc. But, if you get too much water you drown. If there is no water and the sun burns bright, you dry out. Worse yet...

If each family member or friend who are trying to guide you are grabbing petals and pulling you in different directions, telling you what they think you should do with your life... this must stop or they are going to pull off your petals.

Don't let them!

This is your life and those petal pulling people need to allow you to bloom into the person you deserve to be... and you need to tell them. How? With a skill that we first officers learn early on... be Assertive With Respect. 

Remember, they want the best for you. Tell them that the best is to allow you to live your life how you want. They had their turn. This is yours. You may mess it up, but it will be your mess up. Convey that you would appreciate their support, but you have to live your dreams. Support does not necessarily mean finance you. But if they love you enough to guide you, they should love you enough to  be your cheerleader when you venture out of the nest in pursuit of your dreams.

Control and letting go is a challenge. Many parents find it difficult to let go of their little birds. While others throw them out of the nest. But once they truly believe you are firmly committed to following your dreams, they'll come around. Keep the doors of communication open. Tell them where you are and what you're doing. Listen to their concerns. Be open to suggestions. Be flexible. But always remember... this is your life. 

What Horizons Are in Your Future?

Enjoy the journey!
XO Karlene


  1. My dad refuse me to be a pilot. Now Im working as aircraft Maintenance :")

    1. Maintenance is a great career for sure. But one day if you really want to fly... you will do it!

  2. He says: "I'm going to be a pilot!"

    He works for a local bank.


    Tomorrow he will be a pilot.

    Soon or later, it will come.

  3. Control and letting go was an issue when I moved out of my parents' house and came to NY. They did everything they could to convince me NOT to move. "The people are rude. Everything is expensive. Where will you live? How will you make a living?" You name it, it was there to be said and to convince me NOT to make the move. But you know what? Deep down inside, I knew it was something I had to do. I did it. And I am proud to say that as of this August, I will have been here living independantly for the 14 years. I don't regret the move. Everything happens for a reason.

    The same thing applies with becoming a pilot. Family and friends will do everything they can to convince you not to do it. But as aviators, we know that it is what we deep down, need to do. To take to the skies. Listen to what YOU say and not what others think. My parents have been encouraging (to my shocking surprise) for me to become a pilot.

    This is interesting as - had I not moved to NY - I wouldn't have had the stepping stone to start my studies to become one.

    You are the Captain of your life. Not anybody else.

    1. Jeremy, I had no idea the family was against the move. That makes pushing forward all the more challenging...and rewarding. And you did it. Not only survived...but successfully thriving in the big city. And I know that was the headwind that gave you lift.

      Excellent advice for everyone. Listen to your heart. Follow your dreams. Be the captain of your life.

      Thank you for a great comment!

  4. If you cant stand up to the people who really do love you, how can you stand up for yourself later?

    It is your life not your Mom's, Dad's or crazy Uncle's. They have made their decisions based on what they think it important. Now it is your turn, if you live for them, then one day you will find that they are old and dead while you still have their first choice for your life in front of you.

    How can you live a life that has no passion or desire? What can motivate you when you are constantly doing something you hate? Karlene said it very well but she said it softly like a loving mother would.

    I am not as soft and wonderful as she is. I say get off your butt, stop listening to anyone who isn't supportive of you living YOUR life, tell everyone else to go pound sand, and live your life as you see best mistakes and all.

    But when you do that you need to know that if you fail, your family will be there to support you but that wont make their "I told you so" comments any less painful to hear. The only solution to this is to NOT FAIL!

    Don't be afraid to live your dreams.

    1. Rob, I love your first line.... Standing up for yourself. This really is the ultimate truth, and something we need to learn how to do early on. Whether we tell others to pound sand (laughing) we need to do our thing.

      And that failure thing and eating crow tossed with "I told you so..." Well, the reality is... even if you fall on your face, you haven't failed because you tried. You lived. And you took a chance. Not everything works out...but there are no failures.

      Now... with that said... it's so sweet to show them... with a smile... "Told you so!"

      Thank you for a great comment!

  5. Karlene this is exactly what I needed to read at the beginning of this week! Thank you very much!

    Speaking about motivation, there has been recently a very good video related to aviation ☞

    1. Libor, You are welcome! And thank you so much for sending the link. Love motivation! Fly safe.

  6. Just reading your blog for the first time today...thanks for the encouragement! It is hard to take that first step and decide you're going to do what you feel is right, not what everyone else thinks you should do! I finally decided, at 27, to do what I want and learn how to fly a helicopter. Started lessons in Nashville a couple months back, and I'm also enrolled online at UVU.
    Looking forward to reading your blog!

    1. Bebekah, Thank you so much for the comment! Yes, it is hard when so many people think they know better for our lives than we do. We want to respect them, but there is a time when we have to live our lives. Congratulations on making that jump! And... so much fun. Congrats on going back to school too!


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