Archive for June, 2011

Growing Out Of Our Digit

June 18th, 2011

On a larger scale, we each have a digit representing us in the world population count. Irrespective of what that is, that is all we are until we decide otherwise and outgrow that digit.

The story that I am sharing with you today is common with a change in the cast maybe. It is a story about a circumstance and a question we all ask, at some point at least. Some of us answer it with spirituality, be it religion or any other kind, others with a living and others don’t bother. Some ask it early in life and draw their purpose accordingly, some later on under insightful circumstances, and others too late.

What am I here for? What is my purpose? What is my role? Is my life worth it? Am I just a digit in the count of the billions other than me in this world? What trace am I leaving behind? Will it make anyone, including myself, proud?

I went to see an old friend the other day, one I haven’t seen for a very, very long time – some 11 years maybe. At the time, he was a very successful marketer working for one of the big giants and cruising his career through the continents of Asia and Europe grabbing opportunities that many of his peers only wished for. Today, he’s leaving his empire and moving into the unknown of what he calls “what would make my kid proud of me when he looks back at my life when am no longer there.” I couldn’t but be shocked by the power his realization had on his way forward.

In fact, a couple of months ago, my friend was going to work one morning, same as every other morning, in his high-tech sexy car, his chauffeur driving on one of the middle lanes, him in the seat next to him listening to a music album he had downloaded the night before, reading his e-newspapers on his tablet and following the latest jokes sent by his early-morning friends on his beeping mobile.

And then it happened!!!

A speeding drunk maniac diagonally zigzagged across the 5 lanes highway and rammed their car from behind rolling it toward the opposite highway! My friend’s description of the fast seconds of rolls, squeaks, g-force, fear, heart rate, breaking, adrenalin and shock takes minutes and brings expressions to his face I imagine are the exact replication of what he felt at the moment… Watching him tell the story, you would almost see the accident replaying in his dilated pupils…

Then there was silence…

A moment after, he barely opened his lips and said: “I was there, upside down, blood all over my face and shirt, watching the cars breaking and stopping a few cm away from my windshield, my chauffeur unconscious to my left, and all I could think of was: When my daughter tells about me tomorrow, when she thinks back of who I was, will she be proud of something I’ve done? Was my life so far worth it? That is when I knew that what I was doing at the top of my career was not enough. And that is when I knew I had to change. That is when I knew I had to make my life worthwhile.”

At that moment, my friend was shaken by life and decided to outgrow the digit that he was in the count of the world population. What about the rest of us? What is the trace we’re leaving behind? Is it worth it? What is our life purpose? How are we making a difference? More important is if we’re not, what are we waiting for?

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“trace – training and coaching executives

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