Austin, TX



Perseverance. What does that word mean to you?

Hey, it’s Kevin again. Thanks for tuning in to episode 3 of our podcast at Complete Weddings and Events where I share some stories about myself going from an endurance athlete and coach to a wedding entrepreneur.

Persevering Through A Long Adventure

Perseverance means a lot to me. It’s actually a living metaphor for me as things sometimes in my past have come at a little bit more of a struggle than others. Recently I was reminiscing about a few years ago when a few of my brothers, some friends and I rode our bicycles across Death Valley to the portal at Mount Whitney and climbed Mount Whitney. All of that happened over a 3 day period of time. I remember sitting in Badwater [Basin] as we were getting ready to start and it was warm (it’s called Death Valley for a reason) and I remember thinking “man this is going to be quite the adventure.” You know, at that moment it’s easy to get discouraged and want to be done before you’ve even gotten started, but it’s an important part of the process in the journey along the way. Lots of lessons, lots of anguish as we climbed over a couple of mountain passes and finally on that third day we climbed Mount Whitney which was a great victory for the crew.

Applying Personal Perseverance To The Business – Complete Weddings + Events

Something that I like to think about in our businesses and how I lead my team is: we are all becoming who we are meant to be. No matter where we’re at in our lives, we are becoming something. So, who is that person that we are striving to be? What does that look like? I encourage you to think about this and take a “long road” outlook on your life. I’m a very goal-oriented individual and yet I do take time just to enjoy the process, but probably not as much as I need to. I’m definitely not an “instant gratification” person. As you could imagine, training for an ultra-marathon or an Iron Man does not come overnight, and that process of months of training and then getting up early and then getting after it (motivation). Over time, this really ingrained in me this ability to have a long view. During that process, it’s a cycle of trial and failure and learning how to fail quicker.

In the wedding business I took over in 2013, I wouldn’t say it was thriving, but it was at a point where we were producing and executing events. I just remember that sensation of “man, what is possible? And what do we want to see out of this?” Really, that’s where I have been applying the desire to serve well and provide extraordinary services that deliver that joy. Again, joy can be misunderstood, but joy is an all-encompassing, deep place when you experience milestones in your life where, especially when they’re positive, they give you that sense of being and again is part of what you’re becoming.

Pain Is Fear Leaving The Body

One of the things that I’m often talking about with my family is, and don’t take this the wrong way because I’m not a masochist, I don’t enjoy pain for pain itself, but I do experience renewed life in the situations that we want to flee from. They are developing us to be the kind of people that we want to be. I know the Marine Corps is fond of the saying, I think it’s a little bit different, but my family and I often talk about how pain is fear leaving the body and maybe that’s just my son who is an ROTC Marine option student at Texas A&M in the corps cadets. It’s really true and I think a lot of people flee from that and I’m not saying I run toward it, but I have found a way to find comfort in discomfort.

Betrayal Leads To Perseverance

A few years ago in the fall (the fall is the busiest time in the wedding industry when the weather is nice in central Texas) I remember coming into my office late on a Friday or a Sunday night and finding that one of my managers had decided that he was no longer going to be with us. That sense of betrayal that I felt and just “oh my, what are we going to do?” because it was a key member. I just remember thinking “okay, I am going to figure this out. Whatever happened, happened. We’re going to move forward.” I remember being in a pretty dark place for a few weeks and wondering what was going to happen, but the team I had at the time came around me and reminded me that lots of things are possible.

It’s kind of like this: I’m not sure if any of you have had a blister in your life on any part of your body (your hand or your foot), but as you can imagine running like I have in my life and even recently in New Orleans at Mardi Gras hiking and walking or losing toenails. You know that feeling of getting a blister where it’s getting hot and it’s sore. Instead of blocking it out, for me, it’s like you keep pounding it until you don’t feel it anymore. Maybe that’s not the best analogy, but getting to that place where endurance, enduring that, and pushing through those kinds of things can teach you a lot. Not to the point of hurting yourself by any stretch of the imagination, but instead avoiding the discomfort, coming to terms with it, and finding comfort in it. Again, that was a strength of mine as an endurance athlete, and as I’ve coached many athletes over the years.

At the end of the day and no matter what you’re competing in, especially in the more competitive areas, with your competition there are very few differences between you from a physical standpoint, it comes down to mental. That’s where I have shined in the past, ironically. Starting on the short bus early in life and now leading a thriving business and I like to think strategically and mentally and be able to persevere through those hard times. That’s what we’re doing right now during the Covid-19 pandemic is really focusing on the ways we can back the business positively. Though we’re far from perfect, we’re striving to be better and better every day and we’re standing behind our services and products.

Process Adaptation For Weddings And Events

I appreciate you checking in today and listening to more of the story and we will, over the next few weeks, get into the ways that make us unique. We would be excited to connect with you as you are planning for any kind of special event, especially weddings, but really school events, corporate events, and other ways that you’re planning on bringing people together, even during this time. We have set up all kinds of protocols to keep our team and our clients healthy and happy and we even have some really neat technology that we are launching for virtual events. Again, this is Kevin with Complete Weddings and Events. Thanks for tuning in today. We look forward to sharing more stories next week. Don’t forget to check out our website: CompleteWeDo.com/Austin. You have a great day!

Author: Kevin Paladino

Complete Weddings + Events, Austin’s leading provider of event and wedding photography, videography, lighting, coordinationDJ services & photo booth rental.

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