Years ago, a speech therapist worked timelessly to invent a device that would enable deaf people to “hear” by making sound waves visible. Unfortunately, the machine failed to achieve its purpose, but it was not altogether useless – it became the telephone. The man who inadvertently invented it was Alexander Graham Bell, and he never would have sustained the energy to make that revolutionary discovery if he had not been driven by a deeply embedded sense of his own accountability to help the lives of the deaf.
The women were very important in Bell’s life: his mother and his wife. His mother was a teacher. She guided Alexander’s attention to acoustics and the field of speech. Through the full range of his youthful pursuits, she was always there to encourage him. She knew that he would have to find out many things in life for himself.
Alexander and his brother invented a machine that could talk. It had lungs and vocal cords. Its first word was “Mama.” In Boston, Alexander met his future wife, Mabel Hubbard, who had recently returned from school in Germany. She was beautiful, smart, and kind. He was brilliant, tenacious, and poor.
But, it was more than the love and devotion of his mother and wife that drove Alexander to make his greatest mark on the world. Alexander Graham Bell’s primary talent was in speech and speech therapy. He was driven by a promise he had made to himself to help the two most important people in his life, his mother and his wife – they were both deaf. His commitment carried him forward through the years and led to discoveries, including the telephone that benefited millions of others. His efforts are an example of accountability.
There is a saying, “Let your life speak for you.” That’s what happens when you come through on your promises, time after time. There are four essentials for making this happen:
- Believe you can make a difference.
- Promise what you will do.
- Do what you promise.
- Hold yourself responsible for your commitment and efforts, even when you can’t control the outcome.
This timeless saying holds much common sense, yet it is far from common practice.
We will get into the details the four essentials above in – Part 2 – Let your life speak for you.
See you next week!
Listen, Think and then Act!
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