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"Time, like an ever rolling stream"

Posted by griffithd on February 24, 2019 at 4:45 PM

There are moments in all of our lives that are touchstone moments. We all know where we were if you are old enough when JFK got shot, when Armstrong stepped on the moon, 911.

There are also touchstone moments that are more personal when you met your spouse, the birth of a child, a wedding.

Then there are those that are markers, moments when you will never look at life the same way again. Your first paycheck, the first time you experience death, the day you “arrived,” the day you “left.”

All this has been triggered by an event this week of sitting in church saying goodbye to an old friend and reflecting that I am playing the back nine and realizing that we really don’t know when we will take our last shot. The classic hymn lyrics “Time, like an ever rolling stream, Bears all its sons away; They fly, forgotten, as a dream; Dies at the opening day” hit me as if I heard them for the first time.

We are here for a limited time, and I have been thinking of late about impact, about legacy, about dreams that die at the opening day.

In the class I teach on leadership, I talk about how time is the only commodity that we control. Said another way how we spend our time is a choice. I contend that a life well lived is when an individual spends time with intention and with forethought. That time spent well has the opportunity to have an impact, not only on yourself but on others.

This notion gets challenged. Many say that life controls much of what we do. That work, relationships, family, economic status, birth order, parents, race, gender, age all dictate how one spends there time. True, but not entirely true.

Start by carving an hour that you spend with intention. Think about legacy, about impact, goals, about others, and having done so, take action. Exercise, volunteer, change jobs, pray, read, call an old friend, make a new one, act with kindness towards a stranger. The point is to have an impact, be intentional with your time, for your dream to not die at the opening of the day you need to not only have them but to act on them.

I believe we all have a tremendous capacity to make a difference. I know this to be true because of the people we work with at ECS. I am in awe of the individuals we work with who are the most resilient folks I know, who have all the excuses not to move forward but overcome barriers and obstacles that would crush most individuals. They decide to spend time differently and in doing so create an impact for themselves and in turn others. We can learn much from their example.

Start with an hour, then two, then three.

Imagine a world where touchstone moments are not random, but intentional. That you can answer with confidence the question, did I make a difference? Did we do it together?

Where would you start?


Categories: Muddy Boots, Leadership, Griffith Thoughts

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