There is an enormous sense of satisfaction in giving birth to a new creation, perhaps even thrilling. Two and a half years ago, inspired by the encouragement of my wife, Cheryl, I began the process of writing a new book. This month it has been released. With the thrills comes a remarkable sense of vulnerability connected to how it will be accepted, reviewed and received--an experience shared by most authors.

The book’s title, identified in the heading of this post, emerged from over forty years of a career in the field of human development and corporate transformation. I am convinced, after working with literally hundreds of thousands of people, that everyone who has ever lived has left their mark on the world. Some marks may seem barely decipherable, others have clearly changed the course of humankind.

The evidence is clear, however, that leaving your mark is not a goal to be set—it is a result. It is the outcome of realizing the enormous potential that exists within you, the belief that there is a special purpose for your existence, the awareness that you share responsibility for what happens in our world, and the commitment to fully utilize your talents to create a rich and rewarding life.

Mark Of An Eagle was motivated by, and is dedicated to, my five grandchildren. Their ages are 21, 20, 6, 6, and 4. I am awed by their uniqueness and brilliance. My work, however, leaves me with no question that each of us is brilliant. You are brilliant. Brilliance has many forms, and if your light has diminished and not as bright as you wish, you have the ability to bring it to full power. Achieving that goal is the intention of the book.

But, this always demands a radical departure from a daily routine that can only be described as existence. Leaving your mark on the world requires raising your consciousness to a whole new level, to purposefully think and act in ways that enable you to soar above mediocrity and all that would bind you to a limited life. “There is no certainty,” said Roberto Assaglioli, “there is only adventure. Even the stars explode.”

Several years ago, I was confronted by the question the revered poet, Mary Oliver, asks in her poem, The Summer Day: “Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?”

Today, that same question holds as much power and meaning for me as ever. Having reached the age of seventy, life is understandably even more precious and I am challenged by even more questions. How will I treasure the days ahead? Where will I focus my energy? How will I contribute? What will I create? To whom will I look for inspiration? Who will be my role models? Ultimately, what will be my mark on the world?

If you are younger and intrigued that, at seventy, these questions are still relevant and role models still necessary, the answer is—absolutely! I assure you that Tony Bennett at age eighty-eight, recording an album with Lady Gaga, is very motivating to me. The creative force within us expires only when we expire.

On the other hand, age does have its compensations. I have learned to accept my limitations, my weaknesses and laughable idiosyncrasies. I have also been willing to acknowledge and validate my strengths. The world I have discovered is full of ambiguity, contradictions and millions of people whose philosophy does not connect to mine. There is one thing, however, about which I’m certain—each of our lives is precious.

There is no more important thought that you can embrace than your life is precious. You have great value. The world needs you. Through your contribution, through your determination to live your life fully, through your willingness to learn and grow, your indelible mark will be left, and we will all be the beneficiaries.

Mark Of An Eagle can be found here