I’d like to think that I know myself pretty well. I would describe myself using terms such as: feminist, working professional, single mother of two, college athlete, and connector with an extensive network.
And those words are good. They seem to fit. But I’ve always felt that they were too generic and lacked the appropriate passion. Recently I had the pleasure of going to lunch with a colleague who gave me the wonderful gift of a mirrored reflection of myself. To give some background, this person is an ad agency owner that I’ve known and respected for years. And this was a “What if?” lunch. I regularly accept invitations for these types of “What if?” lunches and coffee meetings because they regularly surprise me with substantial value and newfound inspiration.
About half way through our “What If?” lunch he taught me a new word that truly resonated with my soul: the word “pontifex." Sparking my interest, I learned that the Latin term literally translates to "bridge-maker.”
I latched onto this word and it gave me an intense feeling of pride and value. Because that’s what I am. That’s who I am. I am more than a commodity connector with a large network. This word encompasses my higher purpose, and targets my passion in a way that other words simply cannot.
As a pontifex I am a master builder - not of bridges or cities, but rather of people, talent, skills, and resources. I have a consistent track record of creating entities that are strong and powerful. Connections and networks are just my tools of the trade. Being a pontifex has allowed me to build companies, industries, organizations, teams, campaigns, and more!
You can know yourself - but it is almost more powerful to see yourself reflected through someone else’s perspective. I am grateful for the clarity, value, and purpose I found through this all-encompassing word.