Given that our theme in August is “Experimenting,” I’ve been thinking about people who have been great explorers of new territory—people who have made a practice of trying new things, of experimenting. Over a decade ago, I was fortunate enough to meet the late Thomas Leonard, who is generally considered the founding father of the life-coaching industry. What I particularly enjoyed about keeping my eyes on what Leonard created was his continual focus on the future. He truly was a visionary, and his work was always focused on what’s new, and what’s next. The kind of visioning he did is rare — and important.
Often we don’t hold a big enough picture about what’s possible; we tend to get bogged down in the details of our everyday life. Or, even if we’re actively working to create a big vision for our lives, we sometimes become so focused on what’s possible for us personally, that we forget to think beyond our own individual boundaries.
But, as Leonard reminded us, there is always a bigger game to play. We can always dream bigger, play bigger, be bigger. There’s a world out there that needs us. If we’re feeling uninspired about our own lives — or if we feel pretty good about our own lives — there’s always more territory to cover, and more possibilities to be lived.
May we remember that, as we are told in holy scriptures, “without vision, the people perish.” May we tend our visions with care, weeding out anything that chokes our personal vision, and scanning the horizon for new arenas in which to plant and cultivate our hopes and dreams. May our lives be evolving stories; and may we always realize the power, and importance, of holding the highest vision we can imagine for our spiritual center, our communities, and our world.
—Rev. Maggie Oman Shannon