People tell me all the time how inspired they are by my mission statement. For those of you who don't remember my mission statement, or who perhaps have never heard it before, it is this: "Torchbearer for a vision of a world transformed, illuminating freedom, fulfillment, and passion, igniting the flame of infinite possibility for the human spirit."
I have to admit, I love it too. It gets me up in the mornings, gets my blood pumping, and has me keep taking on new things.
I wrote that back in 1994 when I was in the Introduction Leaders Program at Landmark Education Corporation. That was perhaps one of the most challenging, yet inspiring transformational programs I've ever taken, and it gave me to fertile ground in which I could plant the seeds of my mission.
It led me to take on designing my life according to my calling, my values, and my most inspiring life principles. This resulted in my resigning from my then full-time job as the director of one of the few mental health inpatient programs for the Deaf in the country. A lot of people thought I was nuts. I had a great job, was in fact at least 10 years younger than all of my colleagues in that position so clearly had a bright future for growth in my field.
Even so, I had a knowing that this was just not what I was born to do, that I was called to serve beyond the confines of the mental health field. I indeed had a calling for the transformation of consciousness. It was a big calling, one that includes God and purpose and people grappling with all that one needs to grapple with to live a life beyond the ordinary or predictable.
I remember the day I went in to tell the CEO that I had decided to leave my job. He was a powerful man, with a commanding presence, standing over 6' 5"and a hankering for getting his own way. I told him that I would be going out on my own, starting my own business, working toward the transformation of people's lives and souls. He scoffed at my lofty ambitions and asked me, "Oh come on, five years from now what will you be running?" Somewhere, from a deep place inside of me, I felt my small 5' 6" frame stretch to match his intimidating presence and demeaning question, and I answered firmly, looking him straight in the eye, "I'll be running MY LIFE."
He dropped his head and looked at his hands. "Well, alright then. I'm sure you will do well with it."
I pray that my life is a reflection of the mission that gives my being. I am inspired every day by a quote by George Bernard Shaw that reads as follows:
"This is the true joy in life, the being used by a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one; the being a force of nature instead of a feverish selfish clod of ailments and grievances complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy. I am of the opinion that my life belongs to the whole community and as long as I live, it is my privilege to do for it whatever I can. I want to be thoroughly used up when I die, for the harder I work, the more I live. I rejoice in life for its own sake. Life is no 'brief candle' to me. It is sort of a splendid torch which I have a hold of for the moment, and I want to make it burn as brightly as possible before handing it over to future generations."
What purpose is your life being used by today? Do you know? Is it a clear intention that gives your life meaning? I am certain that a life devoid of purpose is devoid of meaning. You're bigger than that. Step up and play a game worthy of your life.