The tributes for Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II continue to pour in. Despite differing opinions on the institution of the monarchy and legacy of colonialism, the world seems united in celebrating a remarkable woman who dedicated her life to public service and who for 70 years was a stable, reassuring presence in turbulent times.
I’ve been thinking quite a bit lately of what it means to live a life of service. Ghandi once said, “The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.”
Most of us live a life of service in small ways, as parents, good neighbours and community members, and in some cases, in our career choices. Health care providers, first responders and elected officials all dedicate their lives to helping or serving others. But for many of us, the concept of living a life of service is not how we would describe our day-to-day life or even our purpose in life.
Living a life of service is different than having purpose. You can have purpose, a passion or focus that makes you happy and feel alive but doesn’t involve serving others.
The world and the people in it seem a bit lost these days. Perhaps the best way to find ourselves again is to be more intentional in leading a life of service.
- The Next Act: If I was Oprah Winfrey—My commencement speech to the graduating class of 2020 (on living a life of purpose)