“Is your vision strong enough?,” Dennis Franks. This is a question I’ve been thinking of over the last two weeks since I’ve heard it. At first I took it as a common sense thing (and I’ve talked about it before): if you want to get somewhere you need to know where you’re going. Sometimes you have to take it one step at a time, but you will eventually get there. After really letting this sink in for a bit, I started looking at it a bit differently. It’s not just about the strength of your vision and what you’re willing to do to see it through—it’s about the clarity to help define the steps you need to take to get there. Vision entails the whole picture: the courage to take the steps forward and the clarity to know which steps are the right ones. See, I always believed the steps would reveal themselves but I realize now that kind of suggests we are all wandering aimlessly literally guided one step at a time. The reality is, when you have the focus and the vision of where you’re going, you only see your path. It isn’t an aimless venture until you find it.
All this time I’ve sought to encourage people and I’ve hoped to bring a little light to their lives by igniting the spark of hope and clarity. But that still wasn’t clear enough. I’m an ambitious person but I’m not a very clear person. I spend my days with a lot of activity in spite of already cutting out quite a bit. When you get laser focused on the goals, that activity slows down even more. You become the conductor, the guidance system for your life. That’s the secret. It isn’t about how much you get done. It’s about WHAT you get done that moves you toward the end result and you can only measure that by knowing what you’re going for.
I know in my gut how hurt this world is right now. I’m talking on a personal level as well as a systemic level and that expands to a global and environmental level as well. We’ve been so focused on maintaining what we know that we never stopped to examine the long term effects on the entire biological system we live in, both in our bodies and in the world. Yes, there have been people screaming about this for decades but we have been able to put off any type of change for a long time because it always felt like it was someone else’s problem. I bring this up because it still starts with us. We continue these cycles of finding the things that comfort us when we are hurt. We look for ways to keep the cycle familiar when we are uncomfortable but now more than ever it is more apparent that the cycles we are striving to protect are doing more damage than good, and that is in our backyards today.
So when it comes to vision, I go back to my ever repeating refrain: know yourself well enough to know what you’re doing and why. Know yourself well enough to understand what you’re doing and the impact it has on other people. Know yourself well enough that you no longer need to hide behind a façade or present an image to the world. Have a vision of yourself that goes beyond what people see today. Get vulnerable. Share what you know because one candle doesn’t dim by igniting another. I have a vision of lighting up the entire world with the strength that comes from within and that requires immense belief and courage to shuck what we know as safe. Start small but with clarity. Know yourself. Those words are so powerful because they hold the key to everything else.