Kelly Clark the Snowboarder from the U.S. Olympic Team tweeted recently “My ceiling will be the next generation’s floor”. What a great perspective on yourself and your talent. Not many people can truly say what she did and mean it. Most people, and I think especially athletes, have a hard time handing off to the next generation.
Think about this in our own lives “ what ceilings are we leaving that will be the next generations floor”? Are there things we are subconscious hanging on too that we are afraid to let go of that if we do we will somehow be less significant? Our tendency is to keep everything we have accomplished to ourselves secretly hoping no one surpasses us.
What would it look like if we viewed the world from the perspective of “ I want the next generation to go so far beyond anything I have done in my life that my ceiling is their floor”? Not that I have completely mastered this mindset, but I do think this is one of the reasons why I try to spend so much time with those who are younger than me. I have a heart for Young Married couples so my wife and I teach a class on Sunday mornings. I meet with a group of young men once a week and pour into their lives. I am not perfect and there is so much I could do in this area, but that is what drives me.
I think the next level comes in the form of questions. One of the business men I follow, Jason Womack, ask’s a simple question “what can I help you with?” So many times we do not start with the basic questions, we just assume we know what people need and impose the answers to questions they have never asked. We also need to ask ourselves questions. Am I laying a foundation for the next generation or just making a living? What areas of my life am I working on that are worth handing on to the next generation or is everything all about me?
Yes we all need to make a living and we all need to do some things that are just for us. We need that renewal time in our lives in order to be better spouses, parents, friends, and workers. However, if we do not build into our lives some form of a legacy I believe that we will have missed a great opportunity to take our lives to the next level. Many times we falsely believe this takes money. Money can help, but there are many organizations, especially intercity, who would love to have just one hour of your time a week. That one hour of investment into a young person can make a world of difference.
Your call – will the next generation go further because of you or will they fall behind? There is no staying the same in life.