My family and I spent solid moments together and created new memories, took new photographs shared new experiences together and these are treasures I would not trade for anything else in the world. Magical moments are created and these become defining moments. These are not magic and mysteries, I sincerely believe that these are moments brought forth by God allowing us to create and experience defining moments that would impact us forever.
To the skeptical I would like to reassure you that there are mysteries in life that cannot be explained through science or logic. Just consider the following:
- How a two-pound box of candy can make a person gain five pounds.
- Why is it that brain cells come and brain cells go, but fat cells live forever.
- This really defies scientific explanation. You just hang something in your closet for a while, and it shrinks two sizes.
- When you suppress laughter, it goes down and spreads to your hips.
- Inside some of us is a thin person struggling to get out, but she can usually be sedated with a few pieces of chocolate cake.
On the serious side however, life is made up of moments. If you think hard about this you would realize that those moments of success or failure have changed your life forever. If you recall the classic animated film “The Lion King,” Simba’s defining moment came when his father Mufasa the Lion Kong himself said, “You are more than you have become.” This was one of his defining moments that convinced Simba to start acting like the king he was. Whether fantasy or reality these defining moments works the same. So let’s look at reality. Let’s go to the work place. A word of encouragement from the boss we admire propelled you to the next level of performance. Perhaps a disparaging word from a lousy leader puts a lid to your potential as the scar from the verbal insult or abuse cuts deeply into your soul. Perhaps a moment of quietness, a book, a passage from The Bible in moments of honest self-reflection that triggers us to change. These are defining moments.
Nobel Prize winning scientist Daniel Kahneman asserts that we experience thousands of individual moments every waking day. These “moments” last only a few seconds. If you consider your strongest memories, positive or negative, you’ll notice the imagery in your mind is actually defined by your recollection of a precise point in time. In some cases, a single encounter can change your life forever. Think of your own defining moments. Are they literally moments? We might be defined by a moment of glorious victory or one of horrendous failure.
We could also be defined by the moment when we decide to make our family’s experience different than the one we grew up with, or the moment we experience a positive example and decide to model it. Defining moments, indirectly or directly, create a new direction or perspective for us. We each experience our own defining moments on the road to excellence. These moments make us who we are.
Some people are overly ambitious obsessed with where they want to go in the corporate world such that they fail to focus on their current roles excellently. Thus they worry about their next move and mess up the opportunities they have today. They step on toes, they get into people’s nerves, the end justifies the mean-ness what they are doing is they are setting themselves up to fail tomorrow by messing up on creating good defining moments today. And this is why you and I need to seize the opportunity to create defining moments for those around us every day. The pathway to excellence is paved with these moments.
And how do we do these? May I offer some practical suggestions:
- Focus on being excellent in whatever it is you are doing today.
- Give the credit to others especially if they deserve it.
- Help make others successful because these are the same people who would return the favor one day. And even if they do not this puts you in a different class compared to others.
- Forgive those who have hurt you and those who are still trying to. Understand that you don’t have to go down just because others are and would want you to.
- Say the following things to your loved ones: “I love you.” “I appreciate you.”
- Help others even if they do not deserve it. Thank God for the opportunity to do so. Perhaps as read this, a defining moment is being created? You will never know.