News/Columns Sept 2020

Waypoints: A Time for Everything, by Geremy Olson

It’s important to know when it’s time to kick back and have fun.


Waypoints: A Time for Everything

by Geremy Olson

Learning to fish and live life


WayPoint: There is a time and place for everything. What’s important is to live life with balance. Balance brings clarity and growth to life. Lack of balance only brings erosion and loss in life.

Fishing was my life as a kid and, in full disclosure, almost killed me on more than thirteen occasions. The instance that is the most memorable was when I was five or six years old and I went swimming at a nearby lake with my family. I spent the day chasing perch with my swim goggles and a little butterfly net I bought on vacation. The dumb thing is that I remember it like it just happened yesterday. As I was swimming the question popped into my brain “if the fish can breathe under water why can’t I?”

Needless to say, I got rescued that day. Even though it almost killed me, I made fishing my whole life all through high school and college.

This has been an extremely hard article to get written. It’s easy to look at this Waypoint and say, “Yes, I agree! It makes perfect sense!”

A time to fish and a time to hunt. A time to work and a time to play. It’s easy to take this concept for granted. As I’ve been working on this article, I’ve been looking for work, directing a fishing tournament series, mentoring people and hanging out with my family. This entire time an annoying little question kept coming up, “Are you right?”

You never know when that moment will come, but when it does are you ready?

As we look around there are a lot of good things in the world and some bad things. Take into consideration all the Covid and civil unrest going on around the country and now it’s really easy to ask what’s right and what’s wrong. Add to the equation all the folks that have an opinion and they have no problem sharing it with you without knowing your story. The end result is frustration and hurt feelings. Then you see those people that, no matter what’s going on, they’re in a good mood. They are helpful and kind to everyone.

What’s the difference?

What’s intriguing to me is how much we choose to miss in life because we get so caught up in the things we place too much importance on. This includes our opinions. There are so many different things out there to do and so many ways to do them that are all great when done in moderation. In other words, there are countless options that are right and a handful of things that are wrong. But when we get selfish with our way of doing things and our opinions, we hurt people. We hurt ourselves. Everyone around us suffers, becomes protective and is ready for a fight they never asked for. This is how friendships and families are broken.

Learning from others helps us to know what’s right and wrong.

We need to live a balanced life, keeping everything in perspective. Look at every side of an issue, not just your own. Look at the circumstances in every situation and reserve judgment until you actually have all the facts.

There is nothing wrong with taking the time to go fishing alone, with the guys, or with the family. Likewise, there is nothing wrong with keeping a big limit, a trophy fish or practicing catch and release. The troubles arise when we take any one good thing in life and give it all our time and attention. We have all been at the ramp or cleaning station and witnessed the wrath of a catch and release guy. Add balance to the situation and something amazing happens.

So, getting back to that annoying little question of “are you right”; the better question is “am I doing something wrong?”

If the answer is no, then the next question is “am I doing what’s right for my current situation?”

Many years ago, I realized I had to fish less and invest more time with my family. Then about six years ago I realized I was putting too much time into work and needed to invest more time to fishing with my family. The result was strengthened relationships and time on the water.

There is a time and place for everything. What’s important is to live life with balance. Balance brings clarity and growth to life. Lack of balance only brings erosion and loss in life.

(Geremy Olson grew up in the outdoors. After being burned as a volunteer firefighter, he had to figure out how to teach outdoor skills to his children from a wheelchair while learning to walk. Today he is an inspirational speaker, FCA Outdoors volunteer, tournament director, video producer, wildfire consultant and proud father of the owners of Missouri Secrets Tackle.


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