Guest Writers

Taste My Enthusiasm: a #LessonLearned by Amy Young

Click on the teacher lady’s pointer to see other writers who have posted in this series.

Amy Young has made her home in China for more than 15 years and has not let the distance impede her passion for the Denver Broncos or the Kansas Jayhawks. She’s a consultant, trainer and writer and currently teaches junior school students on Friday mornings in Beijing. She blogs at The Messy Middle and tweets as @amyinbj.

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Taste My Enthusiam

In high school I worked at Wendy’s Old Fashioned Hamburgers. Oh the thrill at age 16 of learning to use the fryers and put the topping in the right order (white, red, green, white, red, green, yellow. I still remember after all these years). Discovering the mysteries of stocking the salad bar, running the cash register, and cleaning the whole place after we closed.

Wendy’s (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’d come home and gush about this aspect of working at Wendy’s or that particular customer, or my co-workers, or the walk-in fridge or the break room. The topics were endless. How could I not share with my parents and sisters? Yes, as my sisters pointed out, I smelled like fast food when I came home, but even that was a badge of honor from the magical land.

Over dinner as I waxed poetic, my sisters – age 14 and 15 at the time—rolled their eyes and mocked my enthusiasm. While I didn’t shut down completely, I certainly learned to curb my enthusiasm. Part of maturing is reading situations, so toning down wasn’t all bad. But I also got the message that me being me was a bit much, and I needed to kick it down a notch or seven.

Jumping to the present, I have a friend who encouraged me (her words)/badgered me (my take) to start a blog. Last October I was ready to take the plunge and after she helped me set up The Messy Middle, I was off and running.

It turns out blogging is the perfect combo of three of my great loves: words, ideas and numbers. Posting, commenting and tracking stats – to quote one of the most enthusiastic people I know: OH. MY. COW.

The friend who got me started down this path has more than once shaken her head and muttered, “I didn’t know what I was unleashing.” When I told my sister that my friend was experiencing the enthusiasm of Wendy’s, she chuckled a laugh of solidarity. She knows the taste of my enthusiasm.

Enthusiasm is precious. It is to be safeguarded, even fed. People will have a variety of responses to your enthusiasm, but if you look to others to maintain your enthusiasm, it most likely will die. It is yours to guard, protect and nurture.

Fads come and go, but true enthusiasm can be the glue that helps us stick things out for the long haul. Even though there will be occasional rolling of eyes, sighing and humoring head-tilts from those in relationship with me, I can’t help but bring you along for the ride!

What are you enthusiastic about these days?

16 thoughts on “Taste My Enthusiasm: a #LessonLearned by Amy Young

  1. Hi Amy! Thank you so much for being here today! I love this piece. I’m one of those people who sometimes gets accused of being a little too enthusiastic, but when I love something — well, I can’t help but gush! And you are right. When you love something, it can help give you the energy to make it through the most mundane parts of a task. Thanks for being here today!

  2. I love this. Amy, the teenage you sounds like me when I had my first job at Publix (a grocery store for those not in the Southern US). My family would look at me cross-eyed when I would come home and excitedly relay the details of my day.

    My blog allows me to be the enthusiastic about everything I love, since not everyone gets why I would be excited about writing a story, or the fact that my kid pooped on his own. (well, it’s true.)

    Great guest as always, Rene! 🙂

  3. I wonder… do we blog because we are so enthusiastic about life that our friends and family just get tired of us? Blogging gives us another audience, one that we hope will talk back!

    1. Wait, I resemble that comment :)! It has been fun (though ‘fun’ is not quite the right word) to find an expanding and new audience for my stories. My nieces only want to hear them so often before they are begging for new ones!

  4. Just waking up every morning and saying “Thank G-d I’m alive and let me continue to be enthusiastic about everything in life.”

  5. Amy, I met you only once and loved your spirit and enthusiasm. You were so gracious to share over at Red letter Believers and I’m thrilled that you are hooked into the High Calling community. We need enthusiasm. Lord knows, there are plenty of voices out there going the other way and we need people to get excited about fries. 🙂

    1. I KNOW. What is not to love about a good french fry :)!! And a diet coke! Oh my word, I feel myself reving up, so will stop the list there before I list off every food I love. We’d be here all day!

  6. Good for you that you have one thing that you’re enthusiastic about, and it doesn’t change. In my case, my enthusiasm in things i like to do immediately fades. 😐

    1. I have a friend who would become very enthusiastic about something (i.e. a diet, getting up at a certain time of day, using a certain product) and I assumed she was like me … when she gave her enthusiasm, she was all in FOREVER :). Not true. I’m not sure of many that lasted more than a week, ten days at tops. I had never been that close to someone who could change courses so quickly. I did learn to wait and see if this was something that was going to stick, or more of a fad. Either way, enthusiasm is good for us! Keeps us juiced up 🙂

  7. Amy, don’t let them haters hate! LOL I’m glad you found blogging as an outlet for your enthusiasm. I think people often mistake a smile and enthusiasm for being, er, not intelligent, which really ticks me off. Because I’m similar to you, and get pretty jazzed over things other people roll their eyes at!

    Great post! Although now I’m hungry for Wendy’s. 😉

  8. Go Jules Go … your comment makes me wonder something (the part about being not intelligent) — I wonder how enthusiasm from women is seen as different (or similar) to men’s. I have sensed that as I’ve “toned myself down” I’m taken more seriously (which kind of saddens me). Anyway, thanks for the comment!

  9. Love this! Don’t let people curb your natural exuberance or enthusiasm. That’s been happening to me most my life and I’m learning to distance myself from the “curbers.” I am who I am — not a bad way to be.

    So glad you’re digging writing!

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