“A man is only as good as his word.”
Before I was teaching people how to design their lives, I spent a lot of time doing graphic design for posters, dvd cases, websites, stickers, t-shirts, and anything else you can think of that has imagery on it.
Then there’s this tattoo.
Let me give you some context.
This is a picture of one of my best friends in all the world, CJ Johnson. He’s an incredible friend, mentor, and one of the hardest working people I know.
A couple years ago his common law wife, Kim (inside joke there, sorry), asked me if I would design his first tattoo as a birthday surprise.
The tattoo would be a tribute to his mother who had passed away recently, and this was her favorite thing to remind CJ: A man is only as good as his word. This has become his mantra, motto, and work ethic.
He has taken that sentiment to heart and it has become his bedrock.
Typically, CJ wasn’t always the most jazzed about tattoos (“I can’t imagine something I’d still want on my body after 40 more years.”) but this tribute made perfect sense. I was honored to be designing something that had such an important history behind it. Kim wanted it to include the word “Mom,” include her motto, and have the years of her life.
Once I knew what elements were to be included, I began working on different designs. After a couple revisions, Kim and I had something we were happy with.
I shared the final design with him for his birthday, and we both got pretty emotional. Fast forward almost a year to yesterday when I got a text from CJ with this picture.
It’s one thing for someone to tell you they like something, and another thing completely for them to put it on their body for the rest of their life.
So, what’s the takeaway?
Realize your choices can have long-lasting effects, so make choices that are a celebration of your bedrock principles. Do that, and you’ll create connections that will last a lifetime!