The average self-made millionaire read at least 24 books in 2018. Juxtaposed against the fact that 33% of high school graduates and 42% of college graduates will never read another book after they graduate should grab your attention.
One of the best pieces of advice I ever received when I graduated was to keep reading. We can’t give away what we don’t possess and reading is the most accessible avenue we have to learn and grow.
Be persistent in your purpose! Think of your purpose as your divine appointment with your greatest calling. It is not discovered or perfected in comfort, but refined in humility, grace, resilience, vision and intentionality.
Purpose evolves without regard to our age. It should be our coveted companion that we care for and nuture. I think the power in our purpose is ultimately a reflection of our response to the changing seasons of life. I find it ironic that age never appeared to be relevant to God. Thus, “It’s never to late to be who you might have been.“
Be grounded in your choices. We make choices all day long. It is estimated that we make 35,000 choices a day . But each and every day there are a precious few choices we make that largely determine the course and trajectory of our lives.
Columbia University researcher Sheena Iyengar found that out of these 35,000 choices, we get bogged down by as many as 70 decisions a day. When you are grounded in your choices you’ll use these 70 choices to maximize your potential for growing your influence, increasing your impact and expanding your contribution.
Be visionary in your perspective. DeWitt Jones, the award winning photographer and speaker, says, “Vision is the ability to see what everyone else sees and to see something different.”
Vision is personal and marks your divine birthright. It’s not something foreign or undiscoverable because it was implanted on your heart. Complacency and routine hide it from view. But when you begin to see what only you can see and bring it sharply into view you’ll grow your influence, increase your impact and expand your contribution.
Be resilient in your failings. We prefer comfort over struggle. If we are honest, we prefer comfort above most things. Failing brings us face-to-face with our fears. Strange and maybe counterintuitive, but when it comes to growing your influence, increasing your impact and expanding your contribution fear points you positively in the direction of what you have to do.
Ever utter the word, “Can’t!” In the third grade, I wasn’t confident about most things. But I was confident that I didn’t like to do anything that was difficult. Every time I would say, “Can’t,” my third grade teacher, Mrs. Aikens, would reply, “Can’t never did anything.”
Be gracious in your victories! What comes to mind first when you read this? Possibly “gracious” is not a label you’d associate with being “victorious?” Certainly not in today’s world—right? The images and words of the victors today are rarely construed as gracious.
Why should you, I, or anyone be gracious in victory? Because it is proven to be a quality essential for growing your influence, increasing your impact and expanding your contribution.
It won’t go away. It’s always lingering and begs us to engage with it even when we try to ignore it. That’s what this question does. It engages you and presses you to stretch towards your potential—Who do you have to become to grow your influence, increase your impact and expand your contribution?
A couple weeks ago, I shared five core principles with my ImpACTful Notes subscribers aimed at helping them answer this question. The content clearly resonated with people and their feedback inspired me to provide more insights into this burning question.
I’m impatient. When I was a kid, a plaque hung on my bedroom wall that reminds me of my impetuous nature. It read, “God grant me patience and I want it now.”
Now with the changing seasons of life it feels like more than a few years slipped by more quickly than I could have ever imagined. I can now see life’s journey coming together like a four-quarter game. It is now it is clearly evident that many of the seemingly small decisions we make along the way are critical to living out a successful forth quarter.
Deep down we all share the same dream. It doesn’t matter where we were born or our circumstances of life the flame of this dream is always burning. It may only flicker at times, but you can’t extinguish it. You dream of being a hero.
Everything rises and falls with leadership.
Leadership is powerful and transformational because it is relational. The connection between strategy and success can only be bridged with people.