Much will be written about Steve Jobs — his accomplishments, his courage… He was, indeed, an incredible inspiration. I am saddened by his death. Yet in his shortened life he lived fully, was not afraid to push the boundaries, and seemed to be guided by an inner compass and wisdom. And the world was touched by a single life. His “ripple effect” was powerful.
I often speak about the “ripple effect” when I am guiding mindful leadership retreats, or teaching a mindfulness course. We each have the capacity to create a ripple with our action and with our inaction. The ripple effect potential of those already in positions of influence in our society is even greater. It is a responsibility we need to take seriously as leaders. Steve Jobs showed us how to do that.
While we cannot all have the obvious and powerful impact of a Steve Jobs ripple, we often underestimate the ripple effect we are creating… for better or worse. With the best of intentions, we can miss opportunities to positively impact those around us. We can be so caught up in the urgent that we forget about the important. As we use our mindful leadership training to interject the purposeful pauses into our daily lives, we can be more cognizant of those moments when we might, with a simple choice or a willingness to listen deeply, begin the wave that moves something along, just a little, and touches another ripple, and so on…
We will miss you Steve — but there’s no doubt that the ripple effect of your life will live on in ways that no one might have imagined. Even you.