There comes a time when we heed a certain call
 When the world must come together as one.

That was the call that the social activist and musician Harry Belafonte heard. Millions of people were dying because of the famine in Africa. By 1985 he knew he had to take action and reached out to Michael Jackson and Lionel Richie. In collaboration with Quincy Jones and fifty other musicians, who left their egos at the door, they created the single, We are the World, which has generated over $90 Million to address the famine in Africa.

I remember how moved I was when I first heard the song. That memory has lingered and just recently I decided to learn the song on the piano so that I can sing it, come together and share it with others. In the process I’ve thought about how profound the lyrics are.

Coming together doesn’t have be on the global scale that it was in the creation of We are the World. It can be on a personal level. But with our busy lives we don’t make the time to come together on any level and we don’t take the time to listen to our inner voice. Yet we each have a yearning that doesn’t get the attention it deserves.

Our challenge is to rethink what our priorities are and create an environment that is conducive to listening to the deepest yearning of our souls. That’s the greatest gift you can make to yourself and to others. We each have unique gifts to contribute and a unique song to sing.  We all long for peace on the planet. Finding peace inside goes a long way toward creating a more peaceful planet. So does answering that call from within.

We can't go on pretending day by day
That someone, somewhere will soon make a change is how the second verse begins.

That’s also how some of us lead our lives. We wait for the circumstances of our life to change, rather than taking the initiative to create the positive change that has the potential to transform our life and the lives of others. And in our interpersonal relationships, we wait and wait, hoping that the other person will eventually change. We don’t look at what we’re doing to contribute to this unease.

Send them your heart so they'll know that someone cares
 And their lives will be stronger and free.

I love singing this line. We all are so fragile that it's important to let others know how much we care. People are much more vulnerable than we realize and no matter how much it seems they have it together, let them know that you care—a smile goes a long way. And a phone call is great. You make a difference. We make a difference.

But if you just believe, there’s no way we can fall.

Simple truths can make all the difference, but they are often the most difficult to accept and believe and to integrate into our lives.  Believing that something is possible is 80% of getting there. There is nothing that can replace having faith that you’re being guided.  There is nothing that can replace your faith that you can do it. There is nothing that can replace saying to yourself, “Yes, I can.” There is nothing that can replace answering the yearning inside. So what calls you?

You know I love to hear from you. Take the time to connect. You make a difference. Feel free to share this letter with those in your circle.

Author's Bio: 

Mark Susnow, is an executive-life coach and recognized thought leader who inspires others to believe in themselves. He is passionate about life being an exciting journey of discovery. His enthusiastic and inspiring keynotes on change, leadership and connection thoroughly convey this message to his audiences. A former trial attorney and musician for 30 years, he integrates what it takes to be successful in the world with the inner wisdom unfolded to him through years of yoga and meditation. In his former career he was covered by The New York Times, Rolling Stone Magazine, Boston Globe and The San Francisco Chronicle.

He is the author of Dancing on the River: Navigating Life’s Changes. Most recently he has written Discover the Leader Within.