Wednesday, September 16, 2015
What are you Building? Remember the story of the bricklayers? When asked, “What are you doing?” One brick layer said, “I’m earning a living”, the next responded, “I’m laying brick”, the third exclaimed, “I’m building a great cathedral.” The last bricklayer brought great pride, joy and appreciation to his work and went home fulfilled. Which one are you? I met a tire salesman who, when approached for tires said, “Yes, I can help you”. He smiled broadly and demonstrated eagerness, willingness, and friendliness. He judged his work important, for he was helping people. His customers were served not only with good products and service, but with positive energy. He and they went home happy. He, because he gave 100% and they, because they were made to feel special. We all have it within us to do the same. You can build a great monument, or work for a paycheck. The rewards are drastically different. You are the one who gets to decide which it will be. For a more common example, consider the homemaker, who approaches meal preparation for her family with boredom and obligation. The meal might be nutritious, but the most important ingredient, love, has been left out. From appearances, her family fairs well enough, but how much better (and more fun) would it be if food were served with enthusiasm and love. This doesn’t mean every dinner must be a feast, for there is much to be said for simplicity, especially after a long, active day, but it does not take extra effort to imbue what you do with love. This can be as easy as giving your work positive attention and having a clear intention for performing it. In our fear-based society, we have been taught to work for money, but psychologist have proven that for most people, money is not the prime motivator. Most are inspired by recognition. Even the simplest acknowledgment you give another, can have dynamic impact, and literally turn a negative situation or relationship into a positive one. Working for money as the goal can be uninspiring, flat, uncreative, and joyless. Why? Because you are not a factor in the goal. You are not allowing your work to bring you joy. If you sell insurance with the idea of making a financial quota, you are always looking for the next sale. Your interest in serving your customers is overshadowed by the need to raise your bottom line. In time, you don’t care if your customers’ needs are met or not because you are busy competing with last month’s record. There is no heart, soul, or passion in what you do. You have become a insurance robot. Spouting proposals and collecting revenues. Your customers become numbers, not names, and you lose your passion. You measure your success with how much is in the bank rather than did I provide excellent service, did I touch lives? Take an ordinary service, product, or activity and add something that makes it magnetic and irresistible. Add positive energy to your work, and you will find that your job becomes more fun, you have greater likelihood of getting a raise or promotion, you’ll elevate your energy level and possibly go beyond your present company. Keep improving your knowledge, skills and service, and you’ll be the biggest benefactor. What activity, event, or work are you performing? Approach it with openness, appreciation, and as an opportunity to express your creativity and love. Then, step back and notice the results. First, did you enjoy it more? Did others? Which approach gives you the most satisfaction and fulfillment? Are you building a cathedral or just putting in your time?