In our last week of the month of studying the wisdom of great women of America, we’re looking to Margaret Mead for one last bit of wisdom:
“If we are to achieve a richer culture, rich in contrasting values, we must recognize the whole gamut of human potentialities, and so weave a less arbitrary social fabric, one in which each diverse human gift will find a fitting place.”
I think we live in a pretty great world, but I know that there’s lots of room for improvement in everyone’s lives, and in the world as a whole; it’s all far from perfect. The good news is that we don’t have to start from scratch, we’ve got lots of good stuff we can build from. But the first thing we need to do, as Margaret Mead points out, is recognize our diverse gifts, and accept them.
The great thing about 2013 is that diversity is more recognized and celebrated than ever before. But, there are still many people who believe in the old, fixed, lines of years gone by. Like the people who think that being a doctor or attending a great school are the best choices, when there are lots of other ways to plan for a very successful future. It’s up to each of us to discover what that path to success looks like for us personally.
But it’s about more than just success too, because at some point in time in our lives the success feels rather empty. The rich culture Mead speaks of is more than all of us succeeding, it’s about enjoying life and each other too. Society and the social fabric don’t succeed by success alone.
You are more than your successes (or failures), and it’s up to you to recognize that, whether the world does or not. At the end of the day there should be a lot more to you than what you would put on a resume. What unique contributions do you bring to the world?