Does It Match?

The Truth of Who You Are

Toward the end of Moonstruck, one of my all-time favorite movies, there is an exchange between Rose Castorini and the college professor (i.e., Olympia Dukakis and John Mahoney). When Rose dismisses the professor’s advances, he tries to save face by concluding that she is unable to invite him up to her place because “people are home.” Rose won’t allow him this rationalization, and her response clarifies: “No, I think the house is empty. I can’t invite you in because I’m married — because I know who I am.”

Rose delivers the blunt truth with a calm strength of character: because I know who I am. She doesn’t need another reason.

When You Look Back

My father was 88 years old when he passed away last December. At his memorial, one of the many stories we recounted occurred when my parents lived in New York and my father was in his 70s. While visiting, I awoke early one morning and sat down in their prayer corner: two chairs and a round table where my parents said their daily prayers. Tucked into the pages of a book was a piece of scrap paper. There in that familiar handwriting were six lines:

graphic of my father's reflectionI have loved my God.
I have loved my wife.
I have loved my children.
I have loved my Church.
I have loved my country.
I have loved mankind.

What struck me about my father’s reflection was that it was broader and deeper than any list of accomplishments and failures. Knowing my father and his sense of humility, I’m sure he had that mental list going, too. But this was different. It was the big picture — and the bottom line. It must have been a peaceful and gratifying moment when he was able to look back and view his life in this way.

The big question for each of us — in whatever decade we find ourselves — is: Does my life honor what I value most?

What’s Important To You?

Part of knowing yourself is realizing the things that are important to you and actually being able to name them. While the circumstances of life will change, your values will always remain a reliable guide.

This Week’s Call To Action:

  • Write a list of your values. You can use this tool to guide you through the exercise. Project yourself into your 70s and imagine jotting down your reflections as my father did. How would you fill in the blanks: I have loved my…

  • Does it match? Do how you live and work reflect what you value? For any areas of your life that don’t match completely, what would bring them into alignment?

“Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom.”

Here's to you,
Ginny Kravitz's signature