Friday, November 11, 2011


It only comes once in a lifetime: 10.10.10. Today, it is 11 October 2011 and the numbers line up to create a sense of coincidence. Next year, we have a shot for 12.12.12 or 12 December 2012.

My students alerted me to this fact this morning during class, and I excitedly requested that we wait 11 seconds at the stroke of 11:11 to commemorate the special moment. It lasted momentarily, a brief moment in time that passed by rapidly and without regard and regret. However, since we anticipated it – it meant something to us. To numerologists, when you add up the three ‘11’, they add up to 33: the Master Number, based on 11, 22 and 33. There is a body of arcane knowledge that describes the abstract interpretation behind specific numbers resulting from adding birth-dates: days to months to years. Could be your cup of tea-leaves, or not. T mathematicians, numbers are an empirical way to make sense of the world. Patterns in nature can be justified and explained with numbers, and especially prime numbers; like prime rib when ordering a steak.

We did a feature on numbers some time ago, where I discussed the importance of numerals with regards to measurement and symbolic significance. How important are dates to you? How do you measurement on a daily basis?

Yesterday, I posted the individual timings of three Singaporeans in the NYC Marathon. They were not their fastest timings however for a tough course like the five boroughs of New York City the timings were impressive. Each measurement of speed (finishing time) indicates a reference point, of one’s athletic performance. It also marks a significant date for a race that the group of serious runners took months to prepare for. When you meet your expectations, it marks another level of achievement. When you exceed that, it can be attributed to factors of your choice such as effort, dedication, discipline, bonus, luck and fluke.

Leadership Lessons: How often do you take measurements of your progress? How many of your coincidences are pre-determined? How much of your success is related to luck? How much of your achievements are attributed to sticking to your plan, having foresight, and investing in your development?

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