Saturday, May 31, 2014

Channeling Your Maya Angelou

Shortly after the media reported the death of Maya Angelou, I noticed that they had difficulty defining her occupation. Some used combinations of her various roles.
Most described her as a poet, while others referenced her as a writer. My favorite, and perhaps the most accurate description was this: Maya Angelou, a writer of many talents, died today...It  speaks to her superpower, but also honors the multiplicity of her talents.
This got me to thinking, are any of us really just one thing? Maya Angelou certainly was not. She reveled in her dynamicity and was able to live life to the fullest as a result.
Maya Angelou's death reminded me that even when we die, we are commonly defined by what we did - as opposed to who we are.
Oprah had this to say: "What stands out to me most about Maya Angelou is not what she has done or written or spoken, it's how she lived her life. She moved through the world with unshakeable calm, confidence and a fierce grace. I loved her and I know she loved me. I will profoundly miss her. She will always be the rainbow in my clouds."
That's perspective. It eclipses titles and defies categories. It makes you ponder how others will define YOU when you die.

It teaches us that the superficial titles that we use to define ourselves mean very little in the end - unless we fail to evolve and outgrow them. Oprah is on point: our true legacy is not in what we did or the title(s) we held, but by the high esteem in which we are held by others.

With this, I will modify the best description of Maya Angelou...Maya Angelou, beloved writer of many talents, will be missed.

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