About Becky Lynn Smith
Becky Lynn Smith will be the first to admit that hers has been a sometimes circuitous journey to finding her life’s work. And, she believes that what she has learned along the way can save others some time and energy as they attempt to find their version of a happy life and success for themselves.
Born in tiny Monahans, Texas in The Permian Basin, Becky somehow managed to prosper in what can best be described as tumultuous times for her family. She graduated third in her high school class, and then at the age of 30, enrolled at Texas Tech University, completing a four year MIS degree in just under three years, graduating with a 4.0 GPA and at the very top of the College of Business Administration.
Not surprisingly, she was offered several positions after graduation, and wound up choosing one in Houston that would financially help her and her young son the most. “I decided to take that job in large part because of the money,” she says. “It was not the last time that I made a career decision that was based not on my unique gifts and talents, but on the size of the paycheck.”
After receiving a MBA from the University of Houston in 1998, she took another leadership role in the technology industry. But, again, the destination proved not to be a great fit for all of her particular gifts and talents. “I was figuring out that I love technology and I really love learning new things,” she says. “But I also seem to gravitate toward roles where I am able to be around people and not just programming and technology.”
Her knack for leadership and her people skills would next lead her to what she describes as her favorite corporate job and to an epiphany that would be the seeds of her new book: a role as the team leader of an elite group of IT professionals tasked with solving what had been a heretofore un-solvable problem. For Becky, this was the career trifecta: It combined her love for IT, her unique ability to solve problems effectively, and her relationship skills. “It was very intense but it was so much fun,” she says. “We accomplished a lot and we had a great time doing it.”
And, that singular experience was a harbinger loaded with practical lessons about what really matters. The way forward became clearer, and her next steps in her re-invention were intentional and laser-focused on the goal. She took the time to write down the details and methods of this self-discovery- what worked and what didn’t. The result was her first book “Designing Your Ideal Life: Create Your Blueprint for Success and Happiness, released in 2015.
She continues to learn and grow. She will complete a Doctor of Education degree in 2016. Most importantly, she has truly learned what her life is all about, And, she is anxious to share it with others who dare to search for their ideal life.
Becky lives in Navasota, Texas.
Author Q&A with Becky Lynn Smith
Designing Your Ideal Life
Q. Why did you decide to write this book?
A. Because I’ve been there. I took a more circuitous route than I probably should have to get to the place I’m in today, the place where I know I am doing exactly what I was meant to do. I was successful by the usual definition- the corner office, and all of that. But then one day, I just couldn’t ignore that nagging feeling that kept after me. Success wasn’t making me happy, and I had to figure out why. I was almost embarrassed to tell anyone, quite frankly. I seemed to have it so good…
But, thankfully, I DID figure it out. And, it’s my hope that this book will encourage others to figure it out too, and that the ideas we talk about here will give the readers some shortcuts to get there. Time is really important, and if I can help you use your time better on things that really matter to you in this life, then I will feel like we succeeded.
Q. Designing Your Ideal Life is inspirational and thought provoking, but it is also extremely practical. Talk a little about that balance.
A. That was and is a very important part of what we talk about here. We begin by inspiring people to take stock of themselves, and then to do something about what they discover. Knowledge doesn’t do us a lot of good if we don’t act on it, right? The acting on it part of the process needs milestones and steps that work, or we are likely to just wander around aimlessly. And, there are a lot of people doing that these days. I’d love for this book to be a compass and a guide to a better life and I think it can be.
Q. What do you hope to accomplish with this book and your work?
A. Don Clifton, the inventor of the Gallup Strengthsfinder, and the Grandfather of Positive Psychology once said that “Everyone does at least one thing better than ten thousand other people. That’s the good news. The bad news? Most people have no idea what that one thing is.”
I’d like to think that my book can help fix that problem. We live in a world where only twenty percent of people by their own admission get to do what they do best every day. That means eighty percent of us are just doing stuff all day to get by. What would happen if just some of those eighty percent were able to find their calling in life and started doing that? What impact would that have on those individuals, their families, the economy, etc.?
It sounds lofty, but you have to start somewhere. For me, Designing Your Ideal Life is the first word in a conversation that I hope to be having with a lot of people for many years to come.