When I think about Martin Luther King Junior, two words come to mind: boldness and inspiration.

Boldness: He didn’t settle for a manageable dream. He set an inspiring goal. A lofty goal we never fully achieved in our society. A goal that goes way beyond the civil rights movement he lead. A spiritual goal.

“An individual has not started living until he can rise above the narrow confines of his individualistic concerns to the broader concerns of all humanity.”

That goal might seem out reach, it might seem even crazy to go after it but, as a born leader, Martin Luther King Junior felt he had no choice. He saw no reason to settle:

“There are those who are asking the devotees of civil rights, ‘When will you be satisfied?’ We can never be satisfied as long as the Negro is the victim of the unspeakable horrors of police brutality. We can never be satisfied as long as our bodies, heavy with the fatigue of travel, cannot gain lodging in the motels of the highways and the hotels of the cities. We cannot be satisfied as long as a Negro in Mississippi cannot vote and a Negro in New York believes he has nothing for which to vote. No, no, we are not satisfied and we will not be satisfied until justice rolls down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

Inspiration: Only a bold dream can be inspiring. Nobody gets inspired by mediocrity. But there’s more to inspiration than pure boldness. Great leaders inspire the heart.

“In a sense we have come to our nation’s capital to cash a check. When the architects of our republic wrote the magnificent words of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, they were signing a promissory note to which every American was to fall heir. This note was a promise that all men, yes, black men as well as white men, would be guaranteed the unalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. It is obvious today that America has defaulted on this promissory note, insofar as her citizens of color are concerned. Instead of honoring this sacred obligation, America has given the Negro people a bad check, a check which has come back marked ‘insufficient funds.’”

While logic may compel the mind, stories and metaphors move the heart. That’s an important part of Martin Luther King Juniors story and anyone aspiring to be a leader: Often in our zeal for truth and facts, we forget how to communicate them. Being right without being heard benefits no one.

Martin Luther King Junior was 34 years old when he delivered his monumental “I have a dream” speech. We lost him way too early. But his dream is still alive.

“We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope.”