A good sense of timing is required if you want to be a good musician, a good sportsperson or a good comedian. Few of us realise, though, that timing also plays a role in our fulfilling our destiny.
Many people regard the time a person is born – in terms of year, month, and time of day – as being very important. While there may be merit in the fact that when we were born shapes how we see the world, it’s a good exercise to consider the time we were born as playing a role in our fulfilling our destiny – not only regarding what we do but when we do it.
Do you believe your life has a greater purpose – that you have a destiny that you need to fulfil – or do you believe your life is about surviving as best you can ... and then dying? Do you believe there was a reason that you were born where you were born, when you were born, and with the unique qualities and gifts that you were born with?
These are questions we usually ask ourselves as we’re growing up as teenagers, then, as we are forced to come to grips with earning a living, meeting our financial commitments and making our way through life, we shove those questions to the back of our minds as there are more pressing matters to be addressed.
While success is important, if you think that the sole purpose of your life is to be successful, you’ve missed the boat – completely. Success is but a stepping stone ... to significance. And finding your significance is linked to finding your destiny and purpose, having been born into this particular period of time and this particular place.
Maybe you have a sense that you’re growing older and you’re starting to feel that your time to shine, to fulfil your destiny, is passing or has already passed. On the other hand, it’s quite possible that this is actually the time for which you were born. What if you had to mature to this age and this stage of your life in order to have acquired the skills, qualities, insights and experience you now have to do exactly what you need to do.
Two, five or 10 years ago, you wouldn’t have had the experience or insight to be able to achieve what you can achieve now, but now you have that experience and insight, so it’s time for you to stand up and be counted. It may just be time for you to start changing the world.
That might seem a little overwhelming and unrealistic to many people. “Who am I to change the world?” they ask of themselves, and get back to living an ordinary life. What “the world” is actually referring to is, of course, highly personal. For one person, “changing the world” may simply be about changing themselves. To another person, “changing the world” may refer to improving things for their families. Yet another may see “changing the world” as changing their communities or their countries or, indeed, the whole world.
No-one can tell you what “the world” is that you need to change – or when to change it. That is something that has to come from within yourself.
When that sense of purpose, of destiny, arises in you, no-one else has to motivate you. You motivate yourself. No-one else has to tell you what to do. You know what you want to, or must, do. And you will start to change the world, whatever that world is for you.
So, don’t supress that quiet voice of destiny. Don’t shout it down and busy yourself with other things. The time might well have arrived for you to use all the gifts you have been given, all the opportunities you’ve had to learn and grow, so that you are able to help those who did not get the opportunities you were given.
Leaders with a sense of a greater purpose are the ones who will change their companies for the better in the future. The world of business has reached the tipping point where it is evolving beyond the juvenile mentality of material success to a more mature view of success that is linked to a greater purpose.
I encourage you to discover your greater purpose, if you haven’t already done so, and apply to lead people into a better future of a world that you have helped to change!
Alan Hosking is the Publisher of HR Future magazine, @HRFuturemag. He is a recognised authority on leadership skills for the future and teaches business leaders and managers of all generations how to lead with integrity, purpose and agility. In 2018, he was named by US-based web site Disruptordaily.com as one of the "Top 25 Future of Work Influencers to Follow on Twitter".