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Monday Motivation: Are You Leading A Life of Personal and Historic Significance?

September 21, 2020

Monday Motivation, Inspiration, Wisdom for Women Entrepreneurs, Female Business Owners, Small Business Owners, Women

As I traveled through winding roads from historic Burlington, Vermont and the White Mountains of New Hampshire eventually landing in the coastal city of Wells, Maine founded in 1693 history met me at every landing spot. New England conjures up images of lobster, cranberries and blueberries, ragged coastline, tall pines, sand dunes, family vacations, and the place I’ve spent the most time outside of New York State with my family. But this vacation opened my eyes to the historical significance of the area from a couple experiences.

30 years ago I officially made my maiden name my middle name because I wanted to carry my beloved last name with me through my entrepreneurial, speaking, and writing career. I didn’t want to be lost in history like so many women are because they drop their last names when they marry and because I was born “Tracy Chamberlain” in 1964. As I aged and my feminist spirit took hold, I loved that I had three names to be identified by. Not all women are known by three names, but a couple significant ones I particularly look up to do – Hillary Rodham Clinton and Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

As my husband and I made our way north one day to the Joshua L. Chamberlain House and Museum in Brunswick, Maine, for a private tour, to find out more about the historic legend who fought at Little Round Hill on the Gettysburg Battlefield, who many say saved the day along with the 20th Maine at Gettysburg and therefore the Union of this country, I read the news of Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s passing. Without much time to contemplate her legacy at the moment, I listened intently to Joshua Chamberlain’s legacy of not only being a Civil War Hero but a four-time Governor of Maine, and President of Bowdoin College all while living with a painful persistent war wound. Chamberlain eventually died on a freezing day in 1914 at the age of 84, close in age to the amazing Supreme Court Justice Ginsburg death age.

After listening to this man’s story of pure grit and determination knowing he could change the world with his involvement, leadership and actions, made me proud to carry the Chamberlain name, even though I’m not directly related to his blood line. My beloved last name had a new meaning of strength that resonated with my own life story. This reckoning was highlighted by learning of Ginsburg’s passing, a feminist after my own heart, and another historic person who knew they could make a difference in their lifetime by giving their all.

I’m writing this blog post today because Mondays are the perfect day to examine one’s intentions, plans, and spirit, to see what lies within them and motivates them every week. Instead of focusing on the small tasks at hand, each person should listen quietly for the rumbling in their soul and aching in their heart of what they want to do to make their lifetime count for something beyond themselves. A new Monday isn’t just a new week day; it is a chance to remember why we are on this earth and what we want to do with our time, energy, and passion to make a change.

The largest lesson from these two historic figures in my mind is that they didn’t know they were going to be significant in history because they were intent on following an internal, unique motivation to make a difference, and then they couldn’t stop even in sickness. They kept leading a life of personal and historic significance. What can you do today to make sure you are leading your life with both personal and historical significance?

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