When something is faint, almost imperceptible, it may be easily dismissed as being unimportant. However, the thing of which I speak tonight ladies and gentlemen, while not being easily seen, has great power.


It is has the power to give purpose and direction to our lives. Without it, we can wander aimlessly until we pass through that door of the great perhaps.


So what is this thing that can have such a significant impact on who and what we are, and at the same time be difficult to see?


Well the answer to that question lies in each us. For some, it may still not be evident. For others, at this very point in time, it is. When it becomes evident is of little consequence. What is important is that we actively seek it, and when we find it, protect it and live it.


Let me share with you what this personal element is and how I found mine.


I have spent my life in pursuit of reaching a point, a state, when I can say, “I am there”.  This point is my definition of what it is to be self-aware, self-managing, and at peace with my place in this environment. It is when I can say comfortably, I know myself and I am at ease with who and what I am.  I am comfortable with what I see.


It’s like looking in a mirror and seeing ourselves with all our flaws, wrinkles, hair – or not, even the little extra round we carry around, and being able to say, “What I see, I am happy with.”


On the journey to this so called point, we experience issues and incidences –  joys and woes –  love and times of no love – learnings great and small. We all experience these. They are the matter of life.


Ultimately this personal element of which I speak, allows us to journey through this ‘matter of life’ and potentially it enables us to reach this place I call ‘there’. A place that allows us to define who we are and what we do, and be pleased with that definition.


It is at this time, that what was invisible, finally becomes visible – faint but powerful… this almost imperceptible element.

This thing, I believe, is our own personal watermark.


A watermark is a faint design made in some paper during manufacture that is visible when held to the light. It is an image that defines the owner and protects the original image.  The watermark image is subtle, and in its truest form, it is embedded into the paper at time of making.


Perhaps our ‘watermark’ is also embedded in the time of our making. Whether or not this is the case, is of little consequence. What is important is that we seek it until we become conscious of it, and when we do, we protect it and live it.

I have found my watermark…. How?


Let me tell you where I did not find it; and that was not on facebook. A place that has a growing plague of pithy, naive pontifications littering our life’s journey under the misapprehension that such encounters will enhance the matter of our lives.  Such is the ‘Litter’ of Facebook.


No, I did not find my watermark there. I, like most of us, found mine within. In acts of sublime stupidity- and I have had quite a few,  in adversity, in moments of pure joy, in the challenges, experiences and pitfalls of my life, and in those moments of quiet contentment.


And as I aged, my watermark became embedded into my very being, and slowly became visible. It identified me. Now I protect it. Now I live it.


This faint, almost imperceptible element of our lives, which has great power is, I believe, the most important value that drives our lives.


We all have values, whether we have clearly defined them or not. But I believe there is one value that is most defining of who and what we are. It is this value that is forged by the matter of our lives, it becomes our watermark.  When it is clear to us, and we live it and protect it, then I believe we can say we are ‘there’.

A word of caution.  For some, reaching ‘there’ may not be where you want to be, for that ‘there’ is based on a value that is not worthy of you or your life.


Ladies and gentlemen, I believe there is much to be gained from actively seeking our watermark, and when we find it, to protect it and to live it.  It can make us ‘safe’ in our environment and in turn protect us. And then, when we next look in a mirror, we may be able to say, “I am comfortable with what I see.”


And as for my watermark? My one value which has got me ‘there’? Well, as it is for all of us who have arrived, it is in me for all to see.