Posted by Julie L'Heureux

Inspiring yourself to achieve “blue sky space” was the theme of Ryan Vachon’s motivational presentation to our club on Friday. He was born in Boston, where he graduated from Tufts University with a degree in geology. He lives in Colorado, where he is the Executive Officer and Founder of One Premise Innovative Communications with the University of Colorado at Boulder. His career has been inspired by the challenges he has faced, especially while he was learning how to overcome his dyslexia and developmental obstacles. He found ways to inspire himself to be an assertive person and a creative thinker. This growth journey began about 6 years ago, when he found himself confronted by panic attacks. He made a decision to overcome the despair caused by these obstructive emotions. “I finally responded by standing up for myself,” he said.

Believing in the inspirational power of self-motivation has given him the confidence to confront challenges. Among the most arduous of his self-motivating challenges occurred during rock climbing experiences. During his climbs, he was faced with the opportunities and risks he confronted with each step he took, while attempting to conquer treacherous and steep terrains. Quick decision making increased his chances of success, like when he was once faced with a 2,000 foot “predicament”; but emotional decision making could also contribute to tragedy. His advice was “never act on emotion” but work through the “emotional clouds,” and look towards “blue sky space.” 

Confronting fear has been a big part of his life. He has learned to be motivated while striving to overcome fear. Taking small steps towards overcoming fear can lead to “big steps” in directing us to becoming “bigger people.”  

In being decisive, he recommended the acronym “GOALD”: 

G - A goal. “I want to do ‘this’”; and then ask yourself, “What holds me back?”

O - Ownership of the goal.

A - Advise yourself, “What do I do?”

L - Lead yourself through the paths toward the goal; know the challenges (sometimes, this also means facing the realization that there may be too many obstacles in the way of achieving the primary goal.)

D - Dedication for achieving the goal.

In summary, inspiring ourselves to achieve higher goals will give us the added benefit of allowing us to reach out to help others.


(Photo L-R: Matt Wolcott, Ryan Vachon, and President John Curran.)