taking a turn with the torch

“Outstanding leaders pass the torch with fire blazing. Mediocre leaders pass a dimly lit torch. Poor leaders drop the torch, making it difficult, if not impossible, to pick up again.”
– Reed Markham

I attended a powerful workshop for women six years ago that absolutely knocked me out. The two older women leading the workshop had created it themselves and had led several versions of it over 20+ years. I remember sitting in that room thinking, “I want to apprentice them. I want to lead this workshop one day.” But I didn’t speak up because it didn’t feel like the right time to do so. It was clear they weren’t yet ready to pass the torch.

A few years went by and, through a series of serendipitous events, I ended up as the co-leader of this biannual workshop. Another participant and I had asked one of the creators to please hold the workshop again. She said that she was not available and suggested, having seen our passion and dedication, that we lead it instead.

Like that, the torch was passed.

My fellow co-leader and I have met with the creators on many occasions. They have provided us with various papers and notes gathered throughout the years. They’ve given us guidance, advice, and encouragement. The creators are incredibly moved that we have taken their blazing torch and are carrying it on. It is an honor to have the responsibility of a torch lit by others! I hope to one day pass it on with its fire still blazing.

Do you have a torch to pass on? Or another’s torch to carry for awhile?