A personal blog today and also one where I wish to share from what I took from a day of shock news.
I write this shortly after receiving the unexpected news that someone very close to me had passed away.
I got the news at 9am as I was about to start a day of five meetings in person and on video around the world.
I was initially frozen and in shock. I then burst into tears as I stepped onto a commuter train. A moment later I remembered a lyric from a song that goes: “life carries on in the people you meet” and I decided to carry on with my day. The dear person who had just died was all about living life in each moment, so to honour them I chose to do the same.
One of the people I was talking to that day was my friend and client Morgan DaCosta. A the end of our call I gave him my news and he reminded me of his catchphrase, “no ordinary moments”, a timely reminder. In life, there are no ordinary moments (and as I wrote about in this earlier post).
There are indeed no ordinary moments and life does carry on in the people you meet.
One of the things I love about being in my 50s is that there is that sense that life is to be lived in each moment, as though I am in excellent health, the ticking clock of this mortal coil sounds a little louder each day. Carpe Diem! (again an earlier post around that theme with three movies with meaning).
Around this theme, my mind now turns to the Holstee Manifesto, the image above that came out around 2011 from a clothing company and that I loved the moment I saw it. I hope you find inspiration for yourself in one or more of the lines.
For me, that line is “Life is about the people you meet”. Leadership is all about people, hence why I’ve been drawn more and more to focussing on leaders and leadership in my work.
In closing, the song lyric that inspired me that day was from Peter Gabriel and his song “I Grieve”, a song that starts with the shocking sadness of the realisation of losing someone, then, as the song moves forward, and just as I hope to experience at the upcoming funeral of that loved one, it shifts into a celebration of life and living life.
In honour of this dearly loved person, I will ever more dedicate myself to living on purpose and making a difference. Life carries on in the people you meet.
To close, that Peter Gabriel song, with first a lovely article about it by Alain de Botton in the Guardian, in which he notes: “the song both knows how to release our sadness and yet also channels and contains it. It creates perfect conditions for a catharsis.”
Also published on Medium.