“You cannot travel within, and stand still without.” – James Allen
The young mother stood before the Guru, nervous. She had travelled a long distance to see him. “Please Guru”, she asked, “Tell my son to stop eating sugar.” The Guru thought for a long moment, and then said to her “Come back in 30 days.” She was disappointed as she made the long way back to her home. Thirty days later, she stood in front of the Guru again. “Please Guru”, she asked, “Tell my son to stop eating sugar.” This time the Guru looked at her son and said “My son, stop eating sugar.” She was astounded, irritated even. “Why couldn’t you have simply told him that 30 days ago?” she asked. “Because daughter,” the Guru replied, “Thirty days ago I was still eating sugar.”
Remarkable people become remarkable on the inside before they are recognized for being remarkable on the outside. It’s not about what they do that impacts people. It’s about who they are. And who they are is the result of a lifelong journey of character improvement and hard discussions in the mirror. They have an integrity that is clear, and their outer life is in congruence with their inner life.
Any attempt to short-cut this process and work only on the outside is bound to fail. Think of all those young superstars who shoot to fame, only to engage in self-destructive behaviour when the pressure of maintaining an outside life that doesn’t gel with an inner person becomes too much. What about those leaders who get found out for being guilty of exactly those things which they supposedly are against? Double-standards have a short shelf-life, and eventually it all comes tumbling down.
But if the inner life is cultivated in the quiet recesses of our own minds over time, the outer life follows suit. Much like any sports training, hours and hours of dedicated practice are required before the sportsperson becomes good. Then many more dedicated hours are required before the sportsperson becomes remarkable, and recognised. Many have given up by this time. Just so with the inner world of the remarkable person, who endeavours to be better today than he was yesterday. It’s not an overnight process, but it is an exponential one. And so is the impact on the people around him.
Seeming remarkable vs Being remarkable. What are you focusing your efforts on?
If you are looking to be impacted by people who have been on this journey for many years, this year’s Live2Lead conference in October features five remarkable people! More information at www.live2lead-capetown.co.za.
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