It’s amazing what we can accomplish, keeping an open mind while acting on passion.

Wanting to make a difference might start with something already awesome like this:

(Coat for the homeless that transforms into a sleeping bag and carrying bag.)

But as it gains momentum, the same sentiment that inspired the coat can lead to changing lives on a mass scale. And that’s exactly what Veronika Scott of the Empowerment Plan Passion Project realized after she indulged that initial light-bulb idea that comes to us all occasionally (you know? The million dollar innovation that hits you in the bathtub, and then you let perish in the recesses of your brain? Only to see someone else on Oprah half a year later who’s wearing a coat made of C-notes because they’re ridiculously rich off’a your genius idea?)

Well, Scott, whose parents were addicts went to college instead of following in their footsteps. Then she created the above coat. And, in a way, my hypothetical coat made of money isn’t terribly far from what came next. Because the homeless weren’t just going to be keeping warm with ’em. They were gonna be earning dollars for these duds.

But neither they nor Veronika knew it yet.

That’s the other worthy-of-emulating quality about this bish. Not only was she inspired enough to try out her idea, but she also had this priceless trait– one that’s as imperative for profesh success as it is tough to cultivate when you’re an ego driven bastard like me: open-mindedness. Even when people are being douchebags at you. Scott stood outside the homeless shelter one cold day, having people try out version beta of her bag coats. It was a success. They seemed happy. Everyone was grateful. Until Negative Nancy emerged from the shelter, shouting:

“They don’t need coats! They need to be employed!”

You know, my first reaction would be to issue this bish my center finger. My plan B reaction would be to get defensive (“I’m trying my hardest! I’m just one woman! I can’t change the world in one frosty afternoon like this!”) The absolute best reply I could come up with might be a polite shushing.

But the absolute last reaction I’d probably think to have would be:

“You’re right. They do need jobs.”

Much less using it as further inspo to put my brilliant line of winter-wear to work two-fold. Ronnie (can I call you that? Ronnie? I feel like we’re close enough now, so I’m gonna) did both of these things. Then she subsequently began hiring on the homeless she was supplying, teaching them how to sew with a machine, and in essence – providing not only an income and a daily purpose (where they know they’re giving back) but the means to move out of shelters and off streets into homes of their own. Homes that they’d earned.

This tale’s a fantastic reminder – that acting on passion’s only half the battle.

With an open mind, we close in on goals. And then can set new ones.

‘cause then even jackasses can be the catalysts that turn jackets into jobs.

Sidenote – Totally want one’a these. 1. I can keep my dominion bill down (by leaving off the heat); 2. Don’t hafta move all the way to my bed (just untuck that bottom thing) anymore; 3. With the bag option, I can carry more fruit from the kitchen into my work room all at once and I don’t have to sully my feet making multiple trips. 4. It’s a good cause – duh.