I can still picture it, clear as day. New Years Eve, 2012. Bounding down the beach with two of my very best friends, shouting out proclamations of revolution–what for, we didn’t know; we just knew we had a fire in our hearts, a fire that was kindled and ready to light up the world.
Our inspiration? Les Miserables, of course!
Our voices rang out the anthem, adopting it as our own. We were–we are–passionate about nearly everything, and at that very moment, with 2012 flying past us, faster than a speeding bullet, and 2013 rushing towards us, hitting us head on, all we knew was that we were meant to accomplish something beautifully, passionately, transcendentally revolutionary.
We began to grasp at straws, searching for some semblance of a cause for our great revolution. We (and the fourth member of our quadrupsie friendship) had previously declared we would move to Paris in the ’20s, in our 20s, and become the Found Generation. Yet, a literary movement didn’t seem quite right. At least not for me.
So all this time, I’ve been searching for my revolution. But then again, aren’t we all? Isn’t that what life is about? Adam Braun, founder of one of my favorite organizations, Pencils of Promise, gave a speech at Google’s Zeitgeist 2011. In delienating the five steps into creating the Profitable Purpose space (check out the video to understand that lingo), Adam captured the very spirit of our time, “Every person is a revolution within themselves, waiting to happen.” Immediately, his words grabbed my heart and soul; it was as if he had magically found the exact words to sum up the feelings from New Years Eve. We have a revolution inside of us. We are meant for something greater than ourselves. We have a purpose, a revolution. The trick is waiting for the revolution to happen. Of course, we can’t wait around for our revolution, our passion, our purpose, to just happen. We have to put ourselves out there. We have to experience new things, new cultures, new ideas, new beliefs.
I suppose the title of this anthem is really perfect for the discussion. Do you hear the people sing? Do you hear the revolution rise up inside you, igniting an everlasting flame? Because Adam was definitely right. We all have a revolution inside of us. It is what makes us shine brighter than ever before. It is what makes us, us.