John O’Leary reflects on Seth Godin’s desire to “make a ruckus” and how to do so by doing little things, consistently well, to benefit others.
“How do you want to be remembered?”
That was the question I asked a recent guest on our Live Inspired Podcast.
Seth Godin is one of the greatest marketers, thought leaders and influencers of our time. He has shaped entire markets and the manner in which we communicate with one another today. At a more personal level, he has profoundly influenced and amplified my work.
So how does a person like Seth – with more than 20 international best-selling books, millions of dollars, global respect and admiration from his peers, a massive, loyal online following, two children who honor him, and a wife he still adores 35 years into their marriage – want to be remembered?
How Seth Godin wants to be remembered and what that means for how he lives today.
Seth replied he wants to be remembered as someone who ‘made a ruckus.’
He then elaborated on what it means to make a ruckus:
‘To shine a light; do generous, remarkable work; teach people to teach other people; and leave things better than they found them.’
[The entire conversation with Seth was remarkable. I strongly encourage you to check it out to be inspired to make a ruckus in your life, too.]
So, how can we make a ruckus?
Turns out it isn’t about doing the big things. Making a ruckus is really about doing little things, consistently well. It’s about using your talents in ways that amplify others. It’s about staying motivated to do just that. I want to share with you a framed poem I recently saw on my friend’s desk. I think it could be a tool to help you stay motivated to be a ruckus maker, think about how you want to be remembered and most importantly: Actually show up for others in ways that matter to them:
This poem will motivate you to do little things, consistently well, to benefit others.
One day, when you are in Heaven,
someone will come up to you and thank you
for the way you touched his or her life.
The person’s words will take you completely by surprise.
Soon, another person will seek you out,
and then another, and another.
As you listen to each one’s story,
you will begin to discover all the ways that God used your life
when you were unaware of it.
You will find that it was most often not through the big things that you did,
but through the small and simple things:
a spoken word that was not planned,
a spontaneous act of kindness,
a loving attitude,
or a caring smile.
To your joy, you will discover that in all these ways and more,
God used you to deposit an eternal measure of His love
into many needy hearts.
My friends, want to make a ruckus through your life?
Today, don’t underestimate the power of small and simple things, done well. Remember the influence of a simple spoken word shared in love. Embrace the transformative nature within a spontaneous act of kindness, a loving attitude or a caring smile.
All little things that are certain to elevate your day. And those lucky enough to be part of it.
Let the ruckus begin.
This is your day. Live Inspired. J