I want to tell you the story of a man who has made an incredible difference in my life. A difference he is completely unaware of.
When I was studying to be a music teacher at University, this man was my lecturer. One of the many things he taught me was the Philosophy of Music Education. Instinctively he knew that there would be times, when we would have to defend the importance of music education for all children.
Not everyone saw the merit in this class. Never one to follow the crowd, I made an important decision, one that was to shape the rest of my life. “I will learn something in every experience. Even if it is one small thing, my time will be well spent.”
In that moment I opened my heart to receive the gifts this wonderful man had to share.
I felt seen in his classroom. He saw the leader in me, even when I didn’t see it in myself. I imagine he saw deep into my soul and witnessed how much I had to give. Every word he spoke communicated his deeper wish for us all – that we would go out into the world and make a difference.
He was a man of many contrasts. A joyful child playing his drums, unruly mop of hair everywhere; a magician taking us on an adventure into the wonder of sound and the wise philosopher who taught me these words, “It is through chaos and confusion that clarity and truth is found.”
It was more than 15 years later that he had the biggest impact on my life. I had left my teaching career to start a family. Lost, confused and depressed, I was searching for meaning and the answer to the question “What am I going to do with the rest of my life?” I got the sudden urge to clean out my filing cabinet!
I discovered an old assignment. Inside was a one-page critique, amongst the feedback, these words. “Your work establishes you as one who will enter the profession superbly equipped to make a significant contribution to education. I am deeply impressed. PS. would you agree to me retaining a copy of this work?”
I still get emotional when I read these words. Imagine how I felt back then? I sat on the floor and cried bucket loads of tears. It was as if he was standing right in front of me, whispering, “You have forgotten who you are. You have forgotten your dreams and you have forgotten how much you have to give.”
He helped me remember. So began my quest to discover who I was again. To discover the gift I was here to give the world. This was the turning point. The day my new career as a coach and speaker began. If there was an angel in the room that day, his name was Bruce.
So why am I telling you this story?
Hearts will be touched when you choose to give another all you have to give. You may never know the impact you have on the people you meet. You may never know the difference you make. Choose to make a difference anyway.
Remember this story, as you go about your day and know this…
Deep down all of us want the same thing, love. We all want to be seen, to be heard and understood. We want to be appreciated for who we are right now.
So if you are in a job that doesn’t fulfill you, it may be time to see your world through new eyes.
Make today the day you choose to bring your heart to work. Bring your heart to every interaction you have. Notice the impact, this beautiful act of connection and service has on others, on your workplace and on you.
As for Bruce, thanks to Google, I found him this week. It may be time to let him know how much he means to me, the difference he has made in my life. When we touch the lives of another, the ripple effect is a sight to behold. So on behalf of my family, my clients, my friends and ultimately humanity, I say thank you.
As Mahatma Gandhi says so beautifully, “We must be the change we want to see in the world.” It begins with you.