There are some people who die before anyone really acknowledges their potential, but others have already made a great contribution and their loss seems more significant because it’s not possible to know what else they could have done with their life. This month is the birthday of someone who made a positive impact on the world mostly by being who she was, and not necessarily because of the number of tangible contributions she made, although she certainly did make those. Princess Diana died when she was only 36, and this year she would have turned 59.
The world has changed much since Princess Diana (and Mother Teresa who also died the same year) lived. But much of what they’re both known for is the heart they had and kindness they shared with others regardless of illness or social standing. This is one of the biggest freedoms you can have in the world: that you’re free to treat others with respect, without fear, without judgment, and with the belief that they’re just as worthy of a good life as you are.
I’ve often said that the best victories are win-win-win victories. Sometimes there’s good to be found in knowing who can come out on top (i.e. first place) but more often that not it’s those types of competitions only hurt others and don’t truly foster a community of growth and teamwork towards a better future for many instead of just a few.
As we think about Independence Day this weekend and celebrate the freedoms we have and are working hard to develop for more people, I think it’s important to reflect on the victories that people like Mother Teresa and Princess Diana were able to achieve in their lifetimes through kindness and consideration of others. As selfish as the move to America was, it was also done out of selflessness and the desire to create a different and better future for future generations, something that many people believed in over the years and still believe in because they’ve chosen to immigrate here. So this Fourth of July, I encourage you to follow in the footsteps of Princess Diana and Mother Teresa and work to not only better support yourself, but the communities you’re part of as well.
“Everyone of us needs to show how much we care for each other and, in the process, care for ourselves.” Princess Diana