On July 5, 2011 my sister called me to let me know her son, my nephew Nathan, had committed suicide. It was the third suicide of someone close to me in 7 years and it was a catalyst for bringing me to a very dark place in life.

untitledI learned after the first, a close friend of mine, that there is no “reason” that makes sense to us and there is nothing to gain in blaming ourselves for not seeing it coming or doing something to prevent it.

“I should have been there” is an illogical response that unfortunately sticks in the back of our minds no matter how much we tell ourselves it is completely illogical. The best we can do is offer support to others who are still here among us in whatever way we are best equipped.

The common thread in the three suicides was that they all felt overwhelmed by something – different things – and I wasn’t qualified to provide the kind of support they needed.

So then came the big question. What can I – little old me – do going forward that might help some subset of humanity feel less overwhelmed? How can I help?

A logical choice was to fall back on my experience leading businesses and people as well as my business education. I could take that knowledge and experience, find a way to make it available to others, and share it so that perhaps at least in a business and leadership capacity they can feel less alone and overwhelmed.

That didn’t come to me all at once. I had to personally and professionally fall further after Nathan’s suicide. Then I had to decide enough was enough and start making some major changes in my own life. Once I shed all of the dark shackles that held me down, I was able to devise a plan, a service and a solution that I can share with others.

I adopted a lifestyle of “significance vs. success.” Now the focus of what I do and the tools I provide is on others. I have thought long and hard about how to make things as simple and inexpensive as possible, while being effective enough to help others dramatically improve their odds of success.

And I believe that is what the entire suite of Business is ART services and products do. From consulting services, to the book and video training, the Plan Canvas software and all of the free content available thru the Business is ART Blog and Podcast – this is my contribution to others to help them feel less overwhelmed and alone.

If just one person gets that, it will have all been worth it.