Archives for the month of: September, 2013

Altruism

n

1. The principle or practice of unselfish concern for the welfare of others.
2. (Philosophy) the philosophical doctrine that right action is that which produces the greatest benefit to others.

Altruist (n)
Altruistic (adj)
Altruistically (adv)

I see people overlook simple actions that are potential good deeds in the making. And sadly these deeds can often occur at no cost and very little effort. Small random acts of kindness can restore our outlook in the world we live in. Here is my recent random experience:

I have wanted a king size bed for the longest time. I wanted it for no other reason that wanting more space. But I kept putting it off because of the cost and lack of necessity. After all, my queen size bed was really more than enough space. But I broke down and got the king anyway.

Ahhhhh paradise .. The bed was delivered and I began to sleep in diagonal bliss! My old queen mattress went to the spare room and my nearly never used bed from the spare room stood against a wall in my office for a week.

I intended to donate it to Goodwill if none of my Facebook friends could find anyone who wanted it. That was the extent of my research. But come to find out, Goodwill no longer accepts beds and I got like minded responses from friends: junk it, no one will want it, put it in the alley… Etc Etc…

But an old friend from college recommended a website called freecycle.com. I had never heard of it and had no idea what it was. Long story short, it’s basically a Craigslist but you post items you have or want all for free . Everything is free. You give it away and get things for free.

“Yea yea yea not that novel of an idea” is what I thought. But as I read the posts for items wanted, there were some people that were really in need of some help. There were single moms looking for baby items, people down on their luck needing furniture, all kinda of people just looking for help.

Within an hour I had an overwhelming number of responses. After a few text messages my “trash” quickly became someone else’s “treasure”. After the item changed hands I continued received messages from the family I donated to saying how thankful they were. That made me feel great! I told my college buddy this story and he simple replied “that site has helped me through some rough times…”

This story is not told to “toot my own horn” in anyway. I tell it to illustrate how easy it is to offer a random act of kindness. I am so happy I didn’t toss that bed in dumpster or alley as so many friends advised me to.

With just a small bit of research and the power of the internet a token of goodwill occurred.

What small complimentary thing can you do to make the world a better place?

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“Never marry a woman you wouldn’t want to be divorced from”

And for the ladie followers…

“Don’t marry a man unless you’d be proud to have a son exactly like him”

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I came across both of these quotes over the last week at separate times. It’s a different way of looking at an age old problem.

Then, I was talking to a woman at work who was having some very serious problems with her boyfriend. She was obviously pregnant, so I asked how far along she was. “8 months.” Knowing that the guy she was having problems with was only her boyfriend, I took the liberty in asking if the baby was his. Her response, “yea, unfortunately..”

Knowing the problems she was having, I wasn’t that stunned by her answer. But as the day went on I couldn’t help but think about her situation. Sadly, I think her feelings are more common than we think.

I hear about people battling horrible divorces and child custody disputes. The kids are not the problem, it’s the ex lover who battles over the kids that is. But everyone involved is affected.

When you see warning signs early on in a relationship it would be very smart of you to think about what they are saying.

You have to choose wisely. Abrupt, lustful decisions can alter your entire life..

Some people are risk takers. Real men take calculated risks. See the above quotes – then decide…

What kind of person do you want to be? Have you ever thought about it? I bet you have and never even realized it.

Everyone has had days and run-ins with people that get under their skin. When we get cut off in traffic we scream and cuss and try figure what that’s guys problem is. We stand in line and wonder why the person in front of us takes so long. We hear directives from our bosses and wonder how in the world they come up with some of their ideas. Some people treat their significant others worse than they treat their pets.

We look at people and judge their actions and decisions.

We don’t miss a beat when we find a critical flaw in someone else’s personality, but do you ever stop and criticize your own? What impression do you leave on the people you encounter everyday? What would you do if your daughter, sister, or mother was dating someone just like you? Would you approve?

You are a man. Be a good one. Begin today.

Change change change….

Change is good. Yet most of us are scared of it. We get comfortable where we are and what we are doing in a multitude of scenarios. We know we have to “let things play” and we are told that “nothing is perfect” so when things aren’t good we accept it as gospel. But we have to embrace change. For one, it will always happen, like it or not, you will never be able to avoid it.

You will grow up. Your skills will change. Some will improve, others will go away altogether. Your interests will change, or they should. You don’t ever have to lose your old interests but you should be going out and exploring the world. It would be hard to imagine anyone not finding anything else that interests him or her besides what they already know.

All progress includes moving forward. Pretty logical right? But most people will stammer and stall and wonder about moving forward. We put a lot of effort into becoming comfortable with what we have. Its never easy to be the new guy in any situation, from a relationship to a new job setting.

You have two choices: 1) you can let the world pass you by and accept what falls into your lap, or 2) you can actively chase what outcomes YOU want. Regardless of the choice you make, the world will continue to spin.

I recently made some forward progress myself. (My apologies because I know it affected my posting) I spent 13 years in a job that was my dream job. It still is. But I felt I was ready for a new challenge. I’m the type of person who likes to have goals and projects that I am working towards. But I fell into a rut over the years. I actually hate to say rut because I excelled in my field and enjoyed being the experienced person who could answer questions and train new people. But ultimately I wanted to do more for me. But I was hesitant to leave my dream job fearing that everything I love about it would be hard to outdo.

With much support and soul searching I took the leap to explore more of my world. I actually stayed in my field, so it’s still very much my dream job. But it’s an entirely different aspect of it. It has only been 2 weeks but I am loving it. I have a lot to learn but have been able to bring my experiences with me.

I always look at our retirement bulletins at work. They always post a condensed version of the persons resume listed the areas they have worked and some of their accomplishments. I always feel sad when I see a person has only done one thing for X amount of years. I get motivated when I see someone who has been all over the company, using all different kinds of skills. Imagine the knowledge and experiences he or she has picked up over the years.

No one would have forced my hand. They wont force yours either. Opportunities will come and go. They will float right past you. Some will be better than others. But ultimately it will be up to you to reach for one of them and take the risk.