David Archuleta Packs His Bag
Posted by Abrra on Thursday, December 9, 2010
An interesting book title crossed my email the other day, “Repacking Your Bags: Lighten Your Load for the Rest of Your Life .”
One review by Peter Senge, author of “The Fifth Discipline” on Amazon said “Repacking Your Bags will help you figure out where you want to go in your life and what you really need for the journey.” I didn’t need to read the book to find the idea fascinating .
As you can see from this graphic, much of what David shared were practical items he carried with him when he traveled. Note the dozen Sharpies? Like any good Eagle Scout, he wanted to be prepared for any fan encounter that would require an autograph. I have wondered about what we can’t see, but must surely be inside his “backpack for living,” not in the physical sense but metaphorically.
At the beginning of Idol his canvas backpack was relatively empty. A few sentimental reminders of home and of a friend who gave him a flattened milk carton. Typical of a teenager who wants to hold tight to memories of high school, no matter how strange it may seem. He packs a personal journal to ensure he keeps track of daily events to measure his progress. Little did he know how important this journal would mean to his future. It was just the right inspiration for his best-selling book, “Chords of Strength.” Perhaps he also took along a few unfinished melodies to comfort him and work on whenever the spirit or muse moved him.
With long stretches away from home and his family and friends, the bag became a bit lighter in some ways. His metaphorical backpack began to evolve; the meaning of its contents becoming more precious than the tangibles. Some high school chums had gone away for two years but not forgotten. He will see them when he can, when they return from their mission or perhaps in photographs they send from college or when they come to his concerts. Another reduction came as he had to put education on hold. That can be achieved over time and when the time is right. In fact, just recently a radio DJ reported that David said he was doing studies again.
As time progressed his backpack took on new weight. He was now the boss. Hiring a new management team was a solid move forward into his future. I can only imagine the weight on a young man’s shoulders who is responsible for the livelihood of band mates and a host of others involved with a national concert tour.
Looking ahead to more appearances and touring to promote his new CD, The Other Side of Down, the responsibilities and commitments he carries around on a daily basis will become greater in scope and number. David may need to pack a few extra items to guide him along this journey. I envisioned a few new items that he may find useful to help him move forward in his career.
What might be in David’s metaphorical backpack? I gave it some thought!
Last Summer in Greenville, South Carolina, a fan gave him a ring engraved with the letters CTR. The initials stand for Choose The Right. It’s a Mormon tradition to give this ring so that youth will always think before they act in any situation. Maintaining the courage of his personal convictions will be tested in a business where young talent can be lead down the wrong path. David understands that being in the limelight places him in the position of a role model. He is more than worthy of this honor. His recipe for happiness is, “What can I do to make others happy?” Will he be packing a few extra rings to give guidance to those who are in need of support to always Choose The Right?
A dream catcher is always handy. David says the lyrics to his new song, “Elevator,” came to him in a dream. But a dream catcher may be useful for more than songwriting. He once said that his ultimate dream is to sing at the Olympics. A dream of a lifetime! Oh to witness him in a stadium with the world watching and hearing the power of the Voice! In the process of promoting, touring and participating in charity events, David has gained valuable exposure. His hard work does get him noticed. I am confident that one day he WILL sing at the Olympics!
Having a spiritual anchor tucked away inside the bag keeps David grounded. He can access the warmth of his family no matter where he is. Knowing that collectively and individually they are a soft place to fall when he has concerns, eases the loneliness of traveling. Being on the road so much can blow David in so many directions as he crisscrosses the country. Family love and his strong faith in God keeps him firm and anchors him from a possible shipwreck. At a time when many young people are “all sail and no anchor,” David stays the steady course, with a strong sense of duty and a confident eye on the future.
The invisible contents in David’s “backpack for living” are just as noteworthy as the more tangible items inside. If David were to actually share the contents of his real backpack for living, it would reveal how far he’s come in a very short time. It would also make known some life lessons about loyalty, responsibility, commitment and courage. Lessons we would all do well to pack in our own bags as we navigate through life.