Future generations may well have occasion to ask themselves
“What were our parents thinking? Why didn’t they wake up when
they had the chance?” We have to hear that question, from them, now.
--- Al Gore
After losing the 2000 presidential election, Al Gore spent some time contemplating what to do with his life. Disheartened by the most questionable election loss in U.S. political history, Gore channeled his energy into lecturing and lobbying domestically and internationally for environmental causes. In 2006, Gore released the Oscar-winning film An Inconvenient Truth and placed global warming squarely on the U.S. political map (it was already on the radar of 169 countries around the world—the U.S. and Australia notably excluded—that ratified the Kyoto Protocol, which has reduced the emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases worldwide) and in the consciousness of millions of people worldwide. The former vice-president won the Nobel Peace Prize for his groundbreaking environmental work.
Compel yourself to wake up every single day this week and hear the question he raises about the values guiding your life from the future generations who will live with the consequences of your decisions. Put your answers into your Vision Statement (my book The Connection includes a guide to creating your own Vision Statement), and start transforming them into action for the benefit of the rest of us with whom you share this planet.
Have you experienced a moment in your life which, like Gore losing the 2000 election, you interpreted as a wake-up call to focus on what you truly value? Share it with us in the comments.
Anthony Silard is the president of The Global Leadership Institute and the author of the Simon & Schuster book The Connection: Link Your Passion, Purpose, and Actions to Make a Difference in the World. To receive Smile, It's Monday each week in your inbox and a free copy of Anthony's new audio CD, "The Surprising Source of Your Passion", enter your email here (1-step only).