Georgia HOBY Newsletter:
Forty-Ninth Edition, December 28, 2015
Featured Alumnus: Cullen MacDonald '13
Hello, Georgia HOBY family!
I hope that your holiday season has been warm, peaceful, and refreshing.The end of 2015 is approaching, but a new beginning in 2016 approaches accordingly. That being said, it is worth spending a portion of 2015’s final moments to build a purposeful start for 2016. As members of HOBY, we owe, to ourselves, the HOBY family, and the world we are trying to serve, a constructive reflection on the previous year. I am not calling for an ill-fated New Year's resolution, but instead for a harvest of the year’s experiences. In doing so, I hope that we can all gain a renewed sense of direction and wisdom from the things we did, and yes, failed to do.
Perhaps the best place to start reflection is with our memories of friends and family, of laughter and perhaps sadness too. These are the memories which can sustain us for a lifetime. They are the substance of a fulfilling life, and provide strength to face the more difficult times in life. Writing these memories down in a journal is a sensible way to ensure they are not lost to time, and their use is not short-lived. For those of you who attended either of the seminars this past summer, I am sure there are some moments worth saving for later!
With fond memories collected, now is the time to ask questions, and answer with unwavering honesty. Did I give my very best to myself and others? Did I serve others selflessly, with only their well-being in mind? Did I let fear get in the way of new experiences? Did I judge others by anything except their character and actions? Were there times I compromised my values? These are among the many questions I will be answering, and they are undoubtedly heavy questions. I know I won’t like all of the answers to those questions, but I also know it is important to face the truth of how well I did or did not live up to my intentions. Doing so will lead to a more complete picture, successes and failures included, to contrast and adjust my purpose and direction. We know that failures are just as useful as successes, so we don’t want to filter them out because of pride. The only failures in life are the ones we leave alone to fester.
With a fresh slate at our hands, we can seal 2015’s happenings into a year gone by. We can forgive ourselves and others for the times we fell short of our expectations, though we should try not to forget the lessons learned which are vital to the wisdom and purpose guiding future actions.
As HOBY leaders, we have a responsibility to ensure that our tools are sharp and in place for successful leadership. Focused reflection is a practical way of doing so. I hope 2015 has been an outstanding year, but not the best year to come. I am looking forward to all of the wonderful things Georgia HOBY will accomplish in 2016!
Cullen D. MacDonald
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