When I think about the quality of the impact my life will be remembered for, I always imagine that my works will outlive me. You know, leaving my footprints in the sands of time. I think we all share this aspiration. Perhaps, it is a shared mark of our humanity to seek to create legacies by which we are known even long after we are gone. But how do we go about leaving our footprints of time? How should we live if we will matter beyond our time? What is the secret of men who have by the work of their hands accomplished immortality?
I believe there are no straight jacket answers to these questions. However, creating and maintaining the culture of excellence appears to be a principle that has worked for men across times and borders. The legendary Michelangelo made a practice of excellence. He made mastery his core value and history remembers him for it. But he did not arrive at this point by accident. Once, he said “If people knew how hard I had to work to gain my mastery, it would not seem so wonderful at all”
Centuries ago, the great Aristotle quipped that “Excellence is not an act, it’s a habit.” Thus, we will do well to pay attention to this principle once again especially as regards the pursuit of why God has put us here in the first place.
Excel at being who you are
Purpose is first about who we are before what we do. So, embracing excellence must begin with excelling at being who we are. You see, each of us was created by God with a mark of uniqueness that makes us stand out of the crowd. Our pursuit of excellence must first be about living out our uniqueness to the best of our God-given ability. You have to develop a resolve to release all of your deepest potentials before you sign out of this side of eternity. You have to commit yourself to revealing only the best version of you and nothing less.
Excel at doing what you do
Sometime ago, I read an article in which John Maxwell wrote that to gain a reputation for excellence necessitates delivering results whenever you’re called upon. Hit-and-miss performers are neither trusted nor respected. On the other hand, those who repeatedly demonstrate competence gain credibility, and their credibility paves the way to influence. We all must come to the point in which we consistently give our best in all that we do every day irrespective of who is at the receiving end of our actions. Who you work for, the government or yourself, must not be a factor to determine how much effort you will put into your work.
Scripture says a man who is diligent in his work will stand before Kings and not mere men. What this means is that those who consistently deliver excellence in who they are and what they do always become sought after. Because they are constantly improving themselves making sure they are better today than they were yesterday, they never become outdated. They are those whose footprints stay in the sands of time never to be blown away by the wind of forgotten memories.
Blessed? I’ll love to hear your thoughts. Join the conversation.
You matter to me always.