Buy Alexandria Real Estate: November 2009

Alexandria Virginia Real Estate Blog

Lessons in Passion from a Chicken Farmer

Lessons in life can come from the most unlikely of sources.  You expect to learn from your parents, your teachers, your coaches, and your mentors.  You learn from your colleagues, your clients, your friends, and sometimes even your children.

But a Chicken Farmer?

Who would have expected that?


Last week, I had the fantastic opportunity to attend the TEDx MidAtlantic event in Baltimore, Maryland.  If you ever have the chance to attend a TED or TEDx event, hop on it without delay.  What's TED and/or TEDx all about?  Here's a blurb from the website:

TEDxMidAtlantic"TED conferences bring together the world’s leading thinkers and doers for a series of talks, presentations and performances. TED celebrates the convergence of Technology, Entertainment, and Design. TED events have been called “The ultimate brain spa,” “Davos for optimists” and “A journey into the future, in the company of those creating it.”

What can you expect to see? Speakers at TED events – some of the world’s most fascinating, innovative and influential individuals – are challenged to give “the talk of their life” in 18 minutes or less. Attendees are as exceptional as the speakers. Sharing and connection happens from the stage or in the lounge. It’s the conversation that will change your life."

It was truly a remarkable day.  There were 20 speakers from all walks of life: a Nobel Prize winning chemist, the Chief Technology Officer of the U.S., an economic professor and economic blogger, a Grammy nominated singer/songwriter, a neuroscientist studying the mystical effects of psychedelic mushrooms, a National Geographic photographer, the inventor of the first computer firewall, an actress from HBO's "The Wire", an Eastern European virtuoso guitarist, and more.

However, the most inspiring words of wisdom, came from, yes, a chicken farmer.


Joel Salatin is "an American farmer, lecturer and author... He raises livestock using holistic methods of animal husbandry, free of potentially harmful chemicals, on his Polyface Farm in Swoope, Virginia."


During his talk, Joel discussed how his mission of organic farming and of wholesome, clean, and natural methods produce animals and produce that are beyond compare and much superior to foods from non-organic mass agricultural methods.  He claims that his chickens and eggs embody the true spirit and essence of "chickenness and eggness."


Joel Salatin is a down-to-Earth farmer and is someone who is very passionate about his philosophy, his mission, and his business.  His creed and his adherence to his mission have made him a success.



In the most quoted, retweeted, and inspiring line, Mr. Salatin simply said:


"If we devote ourselves to sacredness in our vocations, the world will rise to meet us."

(Click to watch Joel Salatin's speech to TEDxMidAtlantic)


Too often, professionals, whether lawyers, doctors, consultants, accountants, or real estate agents, treat their clients and their businesses as just a job, just another customer, client, or invoice.  People can see through this.  They can see when someone is just going through the motions waiting for the 5 o'clock bell to strike so they can go home.

Those business men & women who are truly successful, those people in life who are truly successful stick to their core guiding principles and are passionate about what it is they do.  This passion shines through.  This passion

Joel Salatin talks about having nobility and personal ministry in your profession.  He notes that "everyday we are writing a story that will be told about us."

He is SO right.


If you know me, or even if we're meeting for the first time, you'll know that I am passionate about real estate.  I am not selling and helping people buy houses.  I do not view my clients as another sale, another job, another transaction.

I fully recognize, understand, and empathize with the reality that a home is not just a home.  It is not just an investment.  A home is not just lines and angles on a blueprint or a structure built atop dirt.  Rather, a home embodies the dreams, hopes, aspirations, and excitement of the people who are purchasing it.  When someone sells a home, they are parting with their memories, their stories, their successes and their failures.

A HomeA home is a sanctuary.

A home is an oasis.

A home is a place to make memories.

A home is a place for dreams to be realized.

A home is a realization of dreams.

A home is a protective castle.

A home is makes you a part of a community.

A home gives you a place for your children to play.

A home welcomes you after a long hard day.

A home is the center of your life.

A home is a sacred place.

That's what I sell.  I'm passionate about it.

And it makes me damn proud to be a REALTOR!


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Comment balloon 54 commentsBrian Block • November 10 2009 02:10PM
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