Home Concepts Adult Development Peak Life Experiences: The Beginning of Emerging Sage Leadership

Peak Life Experiences: The Beginning of Emerging Sage Leadership

13 min read

Gary Quehl and William Bergquist

In my mid-20s I was the first woman to cross Alaska by foot, snow shoes, and canoe—100 years after my great grandfather had done the same.  Emerging Sage Leader

Peak experiences of the 50 emerging sage leaders cluster around eight themes: overcoming tragedy and hardship, personal challenges, birthing and parenting, work, politics, international experiences, mentors, and educational achievement.

Highly Personal Experiences

Some of the peak experiences involved events that have had a very personal, often family-based, and powerful impact.

Overcoming tragedy and hardship

The death of parents had a profound effect on several emerging sage leaders, as did going through an incredibly painful and dark 32-hour labor to deliver a dead child. Two emerging sage leaders had life-changing, sage-provoking experiences resulting from car accidents:

I started my freshman year and was in a serious car accident where I broke my back, was paralyzed, and became permanently wheelchair-bound. This was a major life-altering experience, without which I probably would not be working in the disability field today.

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