Lately, I have been thinking about my greatest fear and how it motivates and shapes my life. My greatest fear is a lack of significance. I’m terrified by the idea of one day leaving this world having not made a significant impact on others, improving their lives and shaping their future. If I’m honest, a part of this fear is selfish, I want to be remembered when I’m gone, but another part of this fear is a desire to leave things better than I found them.
I feel like my life has always been and will always be about finding ways to serve and love people in some capacity. When I was in high school this took the form of starting a nonprofit and serving the homeless in Little Five Points. Then as a young man it took the form of church ministry and church planting. Now it takes the form of running a company and seeking to improve the lives of my team and clients, and starting a nonprofit to serve nonprofits.
I think this fear is also one of the reasons that I love having a large family. There is no better impact I can make on this world than to raise and shape my children, teaching them to care about and love others well. I fully recognize that the greatest thing I will do in my lifetime will be what I impart to my children and how it shapes them as they step out into the world to make an impact of their own.
As I think about this, what I realize is that I want to make an impact in two ways, deep and wide. I want to impact my immediate family and closest friends at a very deep level, helping them to be the people they dream of being. I want to help them grow and thrive and enjoy the gift that is life. I also want a wide impact, being a thought leader for a larger group of people. Part of this desire is selfish, who doesn’t want people to read their blog or listen to their podcast? But, the bigger part of the desire for wide impact is to help shape and sharpen the thinking of people that want to grow and lead. My hope is to guide a wider audience into greater roles of leadership that will make our world a better place.
One day, when I finish this thing called life, I hope to have served people well. I hope that I’m missed and remembered. When I look back, I know I won’t regret that this fear has motivated me in the way that it has. It has made me a better man, business leader, father and husband. I’m thankful for that.