Monday, March 14, 2005

Helping Others: The Life - Organizing Principle of a Remarkable Human Being

As readers will know, I spent a long weekend with my daughter in Florida. She is an amazing and wonderful person because she has discovered the secret of helping others without enabling their self induced weaknesses or victim tendencies. This is a remarkable talent and it is remarkable to see it in action. She does not publicize her numerous acts of kindness and is not resentful if they go unacknowledged (though she appreciates acknowledgement, like all of us). Not surprisingly, she is beloved – and respected by a legion of friends. Her stock of good karma must surpass that of most human beings.

Thinking about a single phrase to capture the organizing principle of an individual’s life lead me to see there was a word or phrase that would capture my own – and others. The phrase I chose for myself was “empowering mentor’. For my son, I chose “entrepreneur with integrity.” For my daughter in law the phrase was “family values” (in the best sense of the term, not as a political “wedge” issue crafted by political strategist Carl Rove). For my stepson, the phrase was “uncompromising authenticity.”

Can you characterize the organizing principle of your life in a single word or phrase? What would that be? Is that what you would like it to be? If not, what could you do to change things? Would you be willing to make such changes?

The Dean and Dormgrandpop were out on the tennis court again this morning. We each won a set. We speculated as to whether our games have improved over the fifteen years we have been playing together and decided the definitely have! Perhaps we are just aging at the same rate. My phrase for the Dean: “entrepreneur with a vision.”


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