Tuesday, January 1, 2013

For What Are You Willing to Die?

When I was a girl I was struck by Patrick Henry's speech imploring Virginians to join the American Revolution, ending with the famous phrase, "...as for me, give me liberty, or give me death!" Was there anything I believed in strongly enough that I would face death to preserve? The answer then was no, a response dictated by my as-yet-unexamined Enneagram personality style. Committed to avoiding conflict at all costs, I had NO opinions, much less a passionate opinion. 

My answer now is YES, I would be willing to die to preserve the rights of women and a society that honors women as well as men. I realize that's a tall order, and I'm renewing last year's resolution to mentor coaches who still have the youth and vitality to be working in the world toward true equality.

Today is a good day to set goals based on passionate principles. Stanford's Michael Ray suggests we ask two powerful questions: "Who is my Self?" ("your divinity, your highest future potential") and "What is my Work?"  ("the purpose of your existence, what you are meant to be").

Answering these questions from Bill O'Hanlon will begin to stir your passion:
  • What gives you a sense of aliveness, that feels "just right"?
  • What do you dream about; what holds you spellbound?
  • What are blessings you could give back to the world?
  • Whose work or life inspires you?
  • What would you talk about if given an hour of prime time TV to influence the nation or the world?
  • What makes you angry enough to correct in the world?
  • What contribution of yours will be more profound than others doing something similar?
To these I add:
  • What do you believe in so strongly that you'd be willing to die to preserve?