FFA members feel exhilarated when first reciting the Creed or attending the annual state convention. After climbing Mount Kilimanjaro, the adrenaline rush for author, motivational speaker and adventurist John Beede is child’s play.
"We feel a stronger connection with the land and people around us,” Beede said when describing his love for the outdoors. Swimming with whale sharks in Thailand and coming in close contact with iguanas in Martinique are experiences unfathomable for most. Beede feels “when you dream big, you dream huge.”
Beede addressed the members of the 85th annual Texas FFA State Convention and described his most challenging climb yet - Mount Everest. Beede used the mountain as a metaphor for the challenges every individual faces and the risks required to become successful.
“Fear is healthy,” Beede said. “Face your fears and become your stronger self.”
This is the message Beede relays through his speaking events and novels. As a graduate of Wheaton College with a bachelor’s degree in communications, Beede has a gift for connecting with others and finding their potential.
“The most important thing is having a passion and fire inside,” Beede said concerning goals. “Pursue it with everything you’ve got.”
As a renowned author, Beede’s novel Climb On! Dynamic Strategies for Teen Success is endorsed by Ryan Tracy and Sean Covey. He also penned Summit Leadership: 7 Steps to Leading from the Top and The Mini-Manuel for Becoming Super Awesome, with 8,000 copies distributed during convention. In addition, Beede hopes to leave the members with something less tangible.
“What we really want in life is to be made to feel as though we are important,” Beede said. “So if you give someone else the feeling that they are important to you, they’ll love you.”
Beede led a workshop on tuning into others’ emotions to accomplish the task at hand. For some the greatest barrier is other people, and for others it is the man in the mirror. Regardless, Beede’s mark on this world is not his footsteps in the snows of Mount Everest; it is motivating students to overcome those obstacles.
“I want them to take summits for themselves to find out what their summits are,” Beede said. “I would like to make sure they feel inspired by me to pursue their own dreams.”