My daughter and I went to see the movie We Bought a Zoo yesterday. She and her friends loved it so much they clapped spontaneously at least 3 times during the movie, as did I right along with them.
It warmed my heart to see three 6th grade girls so moved and inspired. They didn’t even seem to mind that we were the only ones clapping either.
In the movie, Benjamin Mee, the unlikely zookeeper, shares the most important thing he learned from his brother. I may not have the exact phrasing, but he said something like this:
“All you need is 20 seconds of courage and a lot of hope and you can do something magical.”
Amazingly simple. Incredibly powerful.
As a new year begins this thought continues to is run through my mind. We can spend so much time thinking about and planning for a new year. The turning of the clock to January 1st brings with it a magical sense of a clean slate.
This year we all get a fresh chance to do better and be better.
For at least a moment the notion that “this could be my best year” ever seems entirely possible.
Yet it is the moments we cannot possibly plan for that can make all the difference and can be the turning points and possibly even the source of magic in our lives.
In an instant there can be one of those opportunities to do or say something courageous to make a difference or to take one giant step closer to turning a possibility into a reality.
Whatever your goals and dreams are for 2012 I encourage you to be on the lookout for those moments of opportunity to be courageous…and to take them!
In the language of “Random Acts of Leadership” I call these moments of courage opportunities to commit an act of leadership. Whether you see yourself as a leader or not you can commit acts of leadership that can profoundly shape the future. Promise yourself you will not just to see the opportunities, but that you will seize them.
There are 31,536,000 seconds in an ordinary year. Since 2012 is a leap year you have an extra 86,400 seconds this year. That’s over a million and a half 20 second opportunities to make something magical happen in your life or the lives of others.
All it takes is 20 seconds to speak up and be heard, to step up and be seen, to stand up and be known in order to make a difference in whatever matters most to you.
May your year be filled with moments worth clapping for!