William O. Douglas was the longest serving Supreme Court Justice in United States history. He served from 1939 to 1975. Even a basic understanding of history would tell you that he presided during times of significant change. In fact, in the role of a Supreme Court Justice at any time in history would force a need to understand the balance between the security of the past and what is written with the realities of a changing world. I love today’s quotation. I love it more when you think about the perspective of who stated it.
Let’s get on to applying the lessons.
Questions to Ponder
– How do I view security and change together?
– When have I changed and it led to great results?
– What immediate situations come to my mind as I read today’s quotation?
1. Consider a current challenge you face and open up your journal.
2. Write down what you are trying to achieve and what assumptions you are making about the situation and the solution.
3. Then reflect on today’s quotation – are there new facts that you are ignoring or dismissing?
Every generation thinks that change is more rapid for them that in any previous time in history. We look back today and think how true that statement is for us, and how wrong earlier generations would have been. (I can hear people saying, “they had it easy . . .”).
While we might define it differently, everyone wants security – and security comes from the known, the understood, the comfortable. Yet as this quotation points out, that isn’t really security at all. It might feel good, and it might have worked in the past, but the past is no guarantee for the future. So we must think about this balance and walk this tightrope.
As a leader, it is even more important for us to manage this balance, because we are doing it for more than just ourselves. Make sure you are willing to reach to new things to achieve the stability and security everyone wants – even, if in the reaching, it doesn’t feel very secure.