Please understand the plight of the writer! Sometimes I'm working on an idea or thought and I put it out before it 'falls into place' exactly as intended.
Is this your final answer? This is my final answer. Enjoy!
The dictionary says that success is defined as "the attainment of popularity or profit," or "a person that achieves desired aims or prosperity."
That may be the world's definition of success, but I define success as a measurement of the heart that only the heart can know. In other words even if the world says that something is successful, if you don't feel successful in your heart of hearts... what is that kind of success really worth?
I have coached hundreds if not thousands of people and many have shared their stories with me. Success is a feeling, an inner knowing, a sense of contentment at a job well done.
To me Success and Significance are sisters, two sides of the same coin. First I feel successful within myself and then I begin to step up and out to support and help others. Remember that success is winning and significance is helping others win.
When you live a life of significance, you feel truly successful. It is the satisfaction and fulfillment that comes from helping others win.
Louise Mckay is doing just that. She is one of the three principals that came to my home in Hawaii for a private training. She shared with me recently that she returned to her school to hold their first staff meeting of the year and introduced the word HONOR as the focus word for the year.
Then she invited the entire to team to generate a list of 'honoring words' that could use in addressing one another.
The team came up with thirty or more honoring ways to speak with each other. Below are just a few:
- Would it be ok if…
- If you were in my shoes, what would you want me to say or do?
- Would you tell me what your biggest concern is…
- Can we work on this together?
- How is this working for you?
- What are your thoughts on…?
- Thank you for telling me
Louise is thrilled and amazed at the difference it has made in the atmosphere on campus. I encourage all of you who lead a team of any kind to follow in the model Louise has given us.
- Introduce the word - you might use HONOR or RESPECT or KINDNESS. You choose the word.
- Look it up in the dictionary with the team.
- Brainstorm a working definition that the team can agree on together .
- Divide the room into teams. Ask them to come up with words they could use when addressing each other that would reflect honor or respect or kindness that they agreed on.
And have fun with it. Louise tells me that the entire atmosphere in her school has shifted in a positive way. There is magic and joy through improved relationships and the work flows more easily!
We just finished a powerful 7 day training for 3 principals from Melbourne, Australia (names in bold).
All three principals run their own school. Professionally, they are leaders. Yet each has a life that is far bigger than their careers.
In reflecting on the training and the meaning of leadership I realized that everyone plays a number of roles in life. You may be partner, parent, teacher, principal, sister, brother, friend, aunty or uncle, daughter or son all at the same time. You are a leader; you make a difference in every role that you play.
Your thoughts, mind set, attitude, and actions make a difference. You have the power to touch those in your world in a positive way by changing yourself.
Here are three secrets of leadership from within:
- Discover the difference between success and significance. Choose to become a person of significance, a person who makes a positive difference in the lives of those around them.
- Know yourself! Look at yourself in the mirror every morning and promise yourself a great day.
- Intend to have a positive influence in the lives of those around you today.
- Use all five senses to visualize the day in vivid detail.
- Give thanks for a great day.
- Close the day at the end of the day.
- Give thanks for all the good things that happened in the day.
- Intend to improve and be an even more positive influence tomorrow.
Remember that it takes 24- 30 days to imbed a habit. Don't be like the 5 year old who planted a carrot seed and then got so impatient that he dug it up every day to see if it was growing. Plant the seeds and water them by doing the practice daily. If you give the change a chance to take, the results will surely follow!
I have done much reflecting on the meaning of life over the years. And I have come to realize that while success is a step along the upward path of life, it is not the highest peak on the mountain. Beyond the summit of success lies another even higher crest. It is the crowning jewel of the upward climb and provides the greatest source of joy. This is the capstone of significance.
To live a life of significance is to live a life of meaning and purpose. It is to live a life of giving rather than taking. It goes beyond personal achievement to concern about the achievement of others. Einstein said it simply and succinctly when he said, "Try not to become a man of success but rather to become a man of value."
You can imagine a life of significance as a life lived in flow, like a vast river, or a reservoir released, flowing outwards from its source. A life of significance energizes the hearts and inspires the minds of all those it touches along the way.
Deep inside of each of us is a desire to make a difference, to have our
lives count for something. This is the desire to live a life of significance. This desire is basic to all of us, for at the very heart of our hearts as human beings, we recognize our intrinsic connectedness. When this is expressed at its most basic level, we want to make a difference in the lives of those
around us. When felt at its most profound level, we experience being part of a greater extended
family, the family of humanity.
As we press forth to achieve success, the more the deepest hidden desire for significance finds its way into our vision just beyond the summit we've achieved.