What Our Resume Will Look Like in Our Next Life

Worldly achievements, while noteworthy, are less prized than the inner expansion that allows us to manage ourselves increasingly well in the face of anything.
Steve Roberts color photo: stone sculpture with winged head in fall sunrise

If you could beam yourself a century or two into the future and look over your shoulder at today, among the things you would note is that traditional resumes are dying, slowly but unmistakably.  Perhaps especially for those who aspire to leadership.

Less and less is it important where you went to school, or what you studied, or where you’ve worked, or what titles you’ve held, or what awards you’ve won.  It isn’t that such things have no meaning.  It’s just that they are not reliable predictors of what matters most: what you can actually do…and prove you can do.  What situations can you manage well––beginning with managing yourself in the face of anything?

Of course, at some point far enough down the road all of this will be as ordinary as Martian guacamole.  Then, our life (and our resume) will be shaped in large measure by our answers to such questions as:

  • How well can you recognize and act in accordance with timeless, universal principals of health?  
  • How well can you manage fear?  
  • How well can you learn from your experience and share what you’re learning with others?  
  • How well can you gain ever-deeper understanding of what you cannot live without––in a given situation, and in your life in general?  
  • How well can you align commitments with action and action with commitments?
  • How well can you turn conflict into a bridge to greater understanding?

From that future vantage point looking in the rearview mirror at today you will also note the emergence of a process of engaging these and any other questions that is deeper, richer and far more effective than our primary methodology today: looking outside to experts, schools and other forms of worldly authority.  Instead, while honoring the insights of others, we will take action anchored in the truth we find in our own intuition: our heart served by our mind, rather than led by it.  

There are those who say that the most precious gift we can offer ourselves and others is our attention.  Precious it may be, but the usefulness of that gift is determined by our ability to train our mind to actually pay attention, to be present.  And we all know how tough that is.  Hello drunken monkey hydroplaning from fear to fear, thrill to thrill, thought to thought.  

Lovely baby steps addressing this challenge today are found in the stories that abound about the profusion of mindfulness practices that are being employed in so many walks of life to quiet and focus our attention.  Reasonably soon it won’t seem unusual at all for entire organizations to start every meeting with a couple minutes of silence, to be used in whatever ways colleagues see fit to remind themselves of who they really are.

Imagine what resumes will look like by the time Martian guacamole is a comfort food staple here on Earth.  More than a few fellow travelers are building such resumes today.  Worldly achievements, while noteworthy, are less prized than the inner expansion that allows us to manage ourselves increasingly well in the face of anything.


  1. An excellent and thought-provoking article Steve.

    And how soon can we start sharing these important steps in our own lives with honesty? The sooner the better I’d say, for ourselves, our friends, our families, our communities, and our weary world.

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"I honor that we are killing the earth for the same reason I consider being an alcoholic a privilege: it is a doorway to the profound self-understanding required to make truly healthy choices."

The Essay: Honoring the Killing of the Earth