The choice to be a coffee bean is always ours. 8

from book

As a high school senior, Abe was a mixture of a carrot and an egg who became a coffee bean, metaphorically speaking. But then, at his sales job, he reversed back into his carrot and egg-like ways. Fortunately, he was then able to transform himself into a coffee bean once again, saving his company and becoming head of sales and marketing in the process.  There’s an important lesson to be learned from all of these reversals: the choice between being a carrot, an egg or a coffee bean isn’t something we do once and then are done with it – locked into our choice forever, for better or worse. No – we make the choice over and over again with each new situation we face.  This fact should fill us with caution because it means we can stop being a coffee bean if we forget to make the choice to be one. But it should also make us hopeful because it means we can become a coffee bean again, even if we’ve chosen to be a carrot or an egg. The power to be a coffee bean always remains inside of us; we have to remember that we have it!  There’s one more lesson to be learned from Abe’s transformation into a coffee bean. To see it, remember two of the main episodes in which he pulled it off: as leader of the coffee bean club in high school and as head of sales and marketing at his company. In both cases, Abe didn’t become a coffee bean by himself; he inspired others to join him, and they worked together to transform their environments.  In other words, it’s not just individuals who can be carrots, eggs or coffee beans in the face of difficulties. Entire organizations make the same choice as they navigate the broader challenges of the world. Indeed, the same could be said of society as a whole. We can imagine an ideal world in which everyone worked together to transform their environment and circumstances for the better. Maybe that’s what Abe had in mind in the final chapter of his story. After helping to rescue his company, he decided that his mission in life was to spread the message of the coffee bean lesson to as many people as possible. To that end, he traveled the world, giving motivational speeches in a wide range of settings – from schools and hospitals to businesses and nonprofits.  Stories of transformation followed in his wake, as people realized their inner potential to change their environments.  Perhaps the next story of transformation will be a story about you!