Originally published July 2, 2013. Revised July 4, 2016.
I usually write about life and leadership, but today, I am going to celebrate and reflect. I hope you will join me:
As I approach the Fourth of July, I think about the many ways we observe this holiday that range from the very meaningful to the very meaningless. I look forward to my share of both types of activities, but I want to make this Independence Day one that my family and I will remember.
My husband and I will drive to Disney World to spend time with our son, his wife and their children as they stop at WDW on the way home from their vacation. I look forward to an excellent dinner at an Animal Kingdom restaurant that frankly surprised me when we ate there a few weeks ago. I am excited about seeing Disney's Celebrate America! fireworks display. I heard it is spectacular.
I look forward to fun with our children and grandchildren as we share these experiences.
At the same time, I want to pause and remember the heroes, recognized and unrecognized, who make and have made our lives safer and more enjoyable. I want to think about the sacrifices so many have made and continue to make in service to others. These include active military, reservists, police officers, firefighters and those who serve the public in many other ways.
I would like to think of these heroes as models for my own behavior as I reflect on who I am and what contributions I can make to my country, my community and my family.
I also want to make some commitments to myself and people around me as we enter the 241st year of our country’s existence. These are my commitments:
- To use my skills to make a difference.
- To be a positive role model for my family, colleagues and clients.
- To be fully present when I am present.
- To be a focused and thoughtful learner.
- To be a caring and curious listener.
- To be a wise and inventive leader.
- To be a grateful and active wife, mother, grandmother, sister, daughter, friend, business owner and citizen.
I realize I will fall short on these commitments, but I also know that only when I make commitments such as these will I have a chance to achieve them.
I wish you and your loved ones a very happy and meaningful Independence Day whatever you decide to do. I hope you will stop to think about the people who serve and also reflect on who you are as a citizen, leader and family member.
How will you celebrate? What commitments will you make?
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Photo Credit: Scott Ellis www.vsellis.com