In his 1895 Cotton States Exposition address, Civil Rights leader Booker T. Washington, urged his followers to “Cast down your bucket where you are.”
He challenged those listening (and now us all) to focus on the things we could change in our own lives and the world. He knew that the only way to perpetuate progress in a world full of inequities and injustices was to throw your individual efforts and energy into working hard, living, educating, and stepping closer to one another in the present moment. There were no “silver bullet” solutions — so change had to start with each individual in the communities and cities they inhabited. Each person had to decide to cast down their bucket where they are.
To this day (thankfully during a different time and space), his words still ring true. In fact, many of the events of this year have reminded us all that we have a long way still to go in regards to justice, equality, and moving closer to each other. We all still have the choice every day to “cast down our bucket where we are”. There are still no flip of the switch answers to many of the situations or challenges we face, but we have the choice of how weʼll respond.
Our response is needed no matter where we are. So, think about the things that are imperfect in your community, in your family, on your team, or within your company. You can’t flip a switch and solve all the problems overnight, but you can begin to lead change. You can choose to put your small actions into practice right where you are.
So, how will you “cast down your bucket” to make the best out of today? What effort and energy will you put into your work? Your team? Your family? Your friendships? Your community? Your world?
Cast down your bucket where you are and make the world a better place.
Good luck on the next leg of your journey!
Jason Barger is a globally celebrated author, keynote speaker, and leadership consultant. More importantly, he’s striving to be an above average father, husband, and friend.
Follow on Twitter @JasonVBarger and learn more at JasonVBarger.com