Excellence

18 Aug 2015

Last week I went to an awesome concert. It was at one of the top venues in the world, the Red Rocks natural amphitheater in Colorado.

The setting was almost perfect. The sun set as we watched distant showers over the Denver skyline. Our skin enjoyed a perfect temperature. And then we got to hear musicians who are the best of the best perform from their hearts.

The bands? Eclectic Pink Martini from Portland, jazz pianist and vocalist, Diana Krall and her band, and the Colorado Symphony. Wow.

The audience was treated to mind-blowing performances by exceptionally talented musicians. The genres played were diverse: jazz, bossa nova, opera, pop.

I was on row 48 clapping to the beat, mouthing some of the lyrics and kept saying wow, wow, wow. Excellence has a way of blowing your mind and leaving your speechless.

There is something special about being around people who are doing what they were made to do and have perfected their craft.

Would anyone question whether John Lennon and Paul McCartney were meant to write songs, or Steve Jobs was to innovate technologies, or Michelangelo was to paint and sculpt?

My 16-year old niece is visiting. She’s a competitive swimmer, so I asked her why she swims. She said being in the pool is not only a stress reliever, but also a place where she can be alone with just her and the water. She competes because it helps her work towards her goal of getting a college scholarship and maybe even going professional. She competes against others, but I think she mostly competes against herself. She is convinced she was made to swim. She’s got three things that are necessary: talent, motivation, and discipline. She’s probably still working on her 10,000 hours, the theorized number of hours it takes to master her skill, but I don’t doubt she’ll reach it.

What were you made to do? What is the thing that you are really good at? What do others seem to notice about you? What makes you feel like you are being your most true self?

Maybe you’re an amazing baker. Or you have an uncanny ability to read people and love on them when they really need it. Or perhaps you are gifted to transform class of students into life-long learners or make a car better than when it was new.

Excellence has a way of touching people. Being who you really are and doing what you’re great at seems to give life and make a difference to others.

Find your thing and master it. If you don’t, the world will miss out. Be yourself. Be excellent.

Piano keys is a royalty-free image by Gabriele Bianco; retrieved from: http://www.freeimages.com/photo/piano-1-1422349

Photo below taken by Dr. Deb at Red Rocks Amphitheater.

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