I stand for these core values: vision, commitment, legacy. I define them as follows.
Vision establishes direction for focus, direction, prioritizing, and action. An anchoring vision clarifies broad goals that seem unattainable in the moment but as a result of challenging myself, lead to growing into it. A goal that feels attainable is not really an achievement worth striving; that feeling of comfort leads to static that would keep me in my comfort zone instead of expand my limits to enter a previously unforeseen growth zone. I want audacious goals, borderline cocky, because I dare to see the infinite possibilities and I actually believe I can (and we can) realize them.
Commitment drives action toward turning a vision into a reality. An intimidating dream is a fantasy if it doesn’t accompany an inner desire that provokes applying ideas into motion – along with accountability that’s honest. Commitment fuels dedication, drive, will, resilience, and action. Wishes and resolutions are ubiquitous, but the conviction to believe it, challenge it, and ruthlessly identify complacency and oversights will make my dream into a vision and then into a reality. It leads to effort with conviction. Commitment provides the will to overcome obstacles, recover from moments of deflating failure, and find the inner stability when outside factors may pressure wavering. My accountability to follow through in moments of inconvenience demonstrates commitment. I invite adversity to deepen my commitment; I am motivated more by the negative pressure to test my commitment and strengthen my outcomes than I am by the positive that might lead to believing I’ve arrived, that I’ve reached the top, that there isn’t more to do. I enjoy the exertion during the climb, not the celebration at the peak.
Legacy doesn’t mean my name on a building; I measure it by my impact on others. I am daily cognizant that time is finite; that heightens my awareness of where I spend it. That time is not renewable terrifies me; it spurs me into action, to make use of what time I have. Time is pressing, it moves forward regardless of how good my rationalizations are for not utilizing it in a deliberate manner—it takes no excuses. Hence, my sense of time creates urgency to build my legacy, and to build it now, not later in life. Understanding time empowers me to use it to my advantage: starting sooner with consistency means more years of impact, which is not just about more cumulative years, but when done with a growth mindset, achieves a compounding effect for deeper impact. I struggle to find significance with my time if I’m not doing something for someone, because otherwise why am I here being given this time in this lifetime? Of countless quotes out there, none connect more with my heart than that of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., “Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’“ I don’t believe in incidental giving with spare time, as if everything else comes first and giving gets the leftovers; giving is my habit, it comes at the expense of other things by prioritizing with a commitment, because that’s what it takes to have the impact for the legacy I live for.