On the Ripples You Make

The Dalai Lama wrote, “Just as ripples spread out when a single pebble is dropped into water, the actions of individuals can have far-reaching effects.” His words are a gentle reminder to great leaders of the impact of everything they do and say on the lives of those whom they touch and serve.

In his recent blog post, Leadership’s Ripple Effect, Larry Center shares these powerful insights:

“Just like dropping a pebble into water and watching as the ripples expand across it, an event or action, too, can create motion beyond its first impact or influence, as it grows outward, ringing in all directions, eventually arriving at our inspiration and rousing us to act as well.

In this sense, the ripple effect applies to all of us and our actions. Whether we know it or not, the foundation of what we do is laid by what came or was said before, and even prior to that, and before that too, until we can no longer trace the lineage of catalysts and ideas.”

With excitement and joy, may you let fly your pebbles, large and small, across the waters of life. May Mother Teresa’s words be an inspiration for bringing your gifts to the world, “I, alone, cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the water to create many ripples.” As Marcus Aurelius wrote, “What we do in life ripples in eternity.” May your great being and doing be those magnificent “ripples in eternity”.

Have a beautiful day and a magnificent week!!!

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Choose Your ‘Self’

The greatest quest and challenge of the truly great leader is for self-knowledge. It is in this that their greatness and success is achieved. Dag Hammarskjöld, former United Nations Secretary General, wrote: “At every moment you choose yourself. But do you choose your self? Body and soul contain a thousand possibilities out of which you can build many I’s. But in only one of them is there a congruence of the elector and the elected.”

We are one ‘self’ yet we play many different roles in life. It is this ‘self’ which has the capability of knowing that we play these roles. It is this self which sustains our sameness and provides continuity and resilience in a changing world. It is a unifying force in our life. Ramana Maharshi tells us, “Your own self-realization is the greatest service you can render the world.

May you joyously embrace the richness of all your roles, all your possibilities, and treasure and reflect on the richness of your true self – the one you have chosen. Push and stretch yourself further to find ways to bring it to its fullest potential. There is so much yet to be discovered. Your best is yet to come.

Have a beautiful day and a fantastic week!!!

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On Starting from Within

In his book, Everyday Greatness, Stephen Covey, writes that some of life’s greatest lessons suggest that we cannot attain success in life – personal, professional or in service of our community – until we first achieve success within ourselves. He writes: “The most important element we put into any goal or relationship is not what we say or what we do or what we have, but who we are.” It is the small, unseen, quiet decisions in the great leaders’ lives, when they choose to do what is right, that builds the integrity on which their lives are based.

Covey captures this everyday greatness that inspires leaders and reaffirms their commitment to their values in the words of Abraham Lincoln: “I desire to so conduct the affairs of this administration that if, at the end, when I come to lay down the reins of power, I have lost every other friend on earth, I shall have at least one friend left – and that friend shall be down inside of me.”

May you remind yourself of all those quiet moments of decision that shaped your life, and rejoice in that cherished, lasting friend down inside of you, the magnificent you where it all starts.

Have a beautiful day and a fantastic week!!!

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On Generosity

Robert Lewis Stevenson wrote, “Don’t judge your day by the harvest your reap, but by the seeds that you give away,”. The generosity of your selfless giving is the outward expression of your inner servant leadership and your deep caring and respect for others. May the gifts of your life’s learnings, experiences, words, actions, attitudes and behaviors be the seeds of inspiration for their growth and realization of their greatest potential.

May you always hold sacred the words of Pablo Picasso, “The meaning of life is to find your gift. Your purpose in life is to give it away.” May the gift of the beautiful and magnificent you be one of your greatest gifts to the world. May you choose to give your all that others may find their all. Tony Robbins reminds us, “Life is a gift and it offers us the privilege, opportunity and responsibility to give something back by becoming more.” May your seeds multiply in abundance that they become the harvest for others to reap.

Have a beautiful day and a magnificent week!!!

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On the Value of Poise

John Wooden defined poise as, “Just being yourself. Being at ease in any situation. Never fighting yourself.” John Maxwell relates a story about him at one of his ten NCAA Championships in basketball.

“There were thirty seconds before the game was to end, with his team ahead by about eighteen points, Wooden called a timeout for his team. He told his team that in about 30 seconds that they would be national league champions. He told them not to make fools of themselves. He said walk like a champion, go over and shake the other team’s hands. Live above all the hysteria of the moment, because a true champion always has poise in the midst of any type of situation.”

Poise is the gift of being in control of yourself during times of life’s most challenging moments. It is not indifference, rather, it is a calmness, quiet acceptance and pause. Its impact is a perceived confidence and self-control in your response to a frenzied happening. Paul Brown said, “The key to winning is poise under stress.” It is the success achieved in your restrained adaptation to a changing environment. It is the beautiful “just being you”, calm and balanced, not hurried and agitated. It is your poise that gives a magical balance in your moving forward. May you remember Florence Scovel Shinn’s counsel, “Fear and impatience demagnetize. Poise magnetizes.”

Have a beautiful day and a magnificent week!!!

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On the Joy of Drawing Outside the Lines

Albert Einstein wrote, “Live life to the fullest. You have to color outside the lines once in a while if you want to make your life a masterpiece. Laugh some every day. Keep growing, keep dreaming, keep following your heart. The important thing is not to stop questioning.” Viola Shipman adds to this, “Draw outside the lines. Make the sky purple instead of blue. That’s what it looks like to dreamers.”

One of your greatest gifts to the world is taking that daring and ambitious one step beyond, to see outside of your perceived limitation, to dream things undreamed and plant the seeds of your dreams that new realities may grow. Harriet Tubman reminds you, “Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember that you have within you the strength, the patience and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world.”

Your dreams open your eyes and the eyes of others to futures that can be. May you be that magnificent dreamer who paints outside of the lines, visualizes undreamed of opportunities and possibilities, and then acts to add to your life’s masterpiece. May you remember Maya Angelou’s counsel, “If you’re always trying to be normal, you will never know how amazing you can be.” You are the artist of your life. Be more than you ever dreamed you could be… and more… so much more. The world awaits each magnificent stroke of your masterpiece.

Have a beautiful day, a magnificent week and a Happy Easter!!!

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Your Greatest Adventure

Speaking of life’s greatest adventures, Oprah Winfrey said, “The most important journey of our lives doesn’t necessarily involve climbing the highest peak or trekking around the world. The biggest adventure you can ever take is to live the life of your dreams.” Christopher Reeve wrote, “So many of our dreams at first seem impossible, then improbable, and then, when we summon the will, they soon seem inevitable.” Walt Disney said, “All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them.”

Your dreams are the creations of your new future, your magnificent stepping-stone from the reality of your world as it is, to a world you envision of what can be. They are the quietly burning embers that ignite and fuel your life’s journey as you realize the fullness of your potential. It is in your dreams that you find the beautiful gifts of your extraordinary uniqueness and the value they bring to the world and those whom you touch and serve.

May you be bold and daring to live your dreams and leave a legacy which you were born to leave. It is all there within you. As Disney said, have the courage to pursue them. May you hold closely the wise counsel of Harriet Tubman, “Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience and the passion to reach for the stars and change the world.” May you reach for the stars and go far beyond. Your best is yet to come!

Have a beautiful day and a magnificent week!!!

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Your Career and Your Calling

“A job is how you make money. A career is how you make your mark. A Calling is how you acknowledge a higher vision, whatever it may be,” writes Deepak Chopra. Steve Harvey brings additional poignancy to Chopra’s words saying, “A Career is what you are paid to do. A Calling is what you are made to do.” And Valdimir Savchuk writes, “Career is natural; calling is supernatural. Career is decided; Calling is discovered. Career can change; Calling does not. Career is for money; Calling is for God.”

Simply said, a career is about self-achievement, and a calling is about self-fulfillment. Success in a career is found in doing what you love, and doing it with passion, enthusiasm and excitement. It is consistently pushing the boundaries of your comfort zone, changing the ‘what is’ to find the ‘what can be’ and dreaming and achieving dreams undreamed.

Your calling is your purpose and meaning in life, the ‘why’ you were put on earth. It is the magical step from self to selflessness and living life with passion, enthusiasm and serving. It is your gift to the world in all your beautiful uniqueness, love and selfless giving to others. It is the foundational core of who you are beautifully enabling and complementing your achievement of a highly successful career.

Oprah Winfrey beautifully captures calling’s essence saying, “There is no greater gift you can give or receive than to honor your calling. It’s why you were born. And how you become most truly alive…. Everybody has a calling. And your real job in life is to figure out as soon as possible what that is, who you were meant to be, and to begin to honor that in the best way possible for yourself.”

Ferdinand Foch, French general and military theorist, said, “The most powerful weapon on earth is the human soul on fire.” May you be that most powerful weapon in living your life in achieving your dreams and serving others.

Have a beautiful day and a magnificent week!!!

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Grit Wins!

Grit many times wins over the best…. Grit wins, almost always, over giftedness. Grit takes you where others don’t go…. It’s that grit that’ll get you to the finish line.” said John Maxwell. It is a magical sauce that takes you that beautiful step beyond your gifts. It is the phenomenal persistence, resilience, tenacity and drive within you that says, “never say die” and just keep on going against all odds.

Angela Duckworth wrote, “Even more than the effort a gritty person puts in on a single day, what matters is that they wake up the next day, and the next, ready to get on that treadmill and keep on going.” Be that gritty person whose passion and love of life and becoming more than they ever dreamed they could be who, excitedly, gets on that treadmill of life and just keeps on going. Your best is yet to come. Life is so very, very good.

Have a beautiful day and a magnificent week!!!

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Choosing a Mindset Opened by Wonder

Bruce Lipton writes, “Your perspective is always limited by how much you know. Expand your knowledge and you will transform your mind.” Our choices for expanding our knowledge are shaped by our view and understanding of the world that has been molded by background, education, religion, social setting and many other life experiences. In this simple human reality, our growth in the possibilities and potential of ourselves and our life’s journey is unfortunately hampered. Arthur Schopenhauer captures this limitation saying, “Everyone takes the limits of their own field of vision for the limits of the world.”

May you choose to be bold and daring in your knowledge acquisition. Seek first to understand, as Stephen Covey taught us. Think audaciously. Excitedly challenge the self-imposed limits of your ideas and perspectives. Hear loudly Gerry Spence’s counsel, “I would rather have a mind opened by wonder than one closed by belief.” Choose to open your mind to new ideas, perspectives and ways of seeing the world. Embrace the joy, diversity and wonder of the insights and thoughts of others. We are all so beautifully different, not right or wrong, just different, in how we see and understand the world. Remember Aristotle’s words, “It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.”

Buddha shared the richness and impact of what we think having written, “We are what we think. All that we are arises with our thoughts. With our thoughts, we make the world.” May you choose to have a mind opened by wonder than one closed by belief. Dream dreams undreamed and bring reality to them as you achieve your greatest potential and change the world.

Have a beautiful day and a magnificent week!!!

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