This morning I decided to take it old school and use some candlesticks to illuminate my space as I penned my first morning thoughts in my journal.
I lit one thinking it would emit enough light to write by but who am I kidding. These eyes are getting older so I quickly realized I needed more light. So I grabbed another candlestick and held its wick up against the first to light it. For good measure I lit a third.
In the process of doing this I was reminded of this quote by Gautama Buddha: "Thousands of candles can be lighted from a single candle. Happiness never decreases by being shared."
I smiled. "I am a candle", I said to myself.
We all are.
As leaders, people count on us to shine bright. But they also count on us to share the flame the makes us burn bright so that they too can become illuminated. And in doing so, we don't lose our own flame. We don't lose our own light. We simply magnify the impact of our light by helping light shine from another. And another. And another.
This repeatable process of leadership...of giving... is where our true value lies.
You can have all the seats at the table but what good are they if you are not giving others the chance to sit with you?
You can have all the knowledge in the world but what good is it if you are not inviting others to learn from you?
You can enjoy all of the happiness life has to offer but what good is it if you are not using what you have to bring joy to others?
Today's moment in a mug is a reminder that true value is not in what you have, but comes from what you give.
Don't be a candle content to burn alone. Light up those around you to magnify your impact and exponentially increase your value.