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I’m Not Joan

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One of my favorite growth and development books is The Path, by Laurie Beth Jones. In this book I was introduced to the concept of a peronal mission statement, which is really a written reason for one’s existence. Although there are many examples, the one that stuck with me over the years is Joan of Arc. Her mission statement – Free France! Every decision she made after setting her intention could be weighed against that mission. Clearly, I’m not Joan.

I’ve been using and recommending this book for a long time and have repeated the exercises at different statges of my life. While some components of my personal mission have remained constant, others have changed. Clearly, I’m not Joan.

The author writes that “forgetting your mission leads, inevitably, to getting tangled up in the details–details that can take you completely off your path.” This is where Joan and I are even more dissimilar it would seem. My personal mission isn’t always in the forefront of my consciousness and as a result, I am more easily tossed on the tide of daily living.

My current mission is to recognize, appreciate, and encourage the spark of joy and unique essence in all people I encounter in order to create ripples of compassion and intelligence throughout the world. Seems pretty big! I think I will need reminders to keep on track so I plan to post this on the mirror in my bathroom so I see it first thing in the morning. I’m hopeful it will have a positive impact on my day.

I’ve been thinking of the things I need to work on in order to pursue that mission. The first is mindfulness. I need to remain more present in the current moment in order to recognize the spark of joy and unique essence. I’ll keep you posted on how it goes.

Do you have a personal mission statement? I’d love to hear it.


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