'Don't ask yourself what the world needs...

by tosca on Friday, June 10, 2011

...ask yourself what makes you come alive. And then go and do that. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.'
~ Howard Thurman

In which Tosca is inspired to take back her joy. And yes, it truly is as corny as you think it's going to be.

Last month I met a guy who knew his way around a bed. That's not a euphemism. Dylan is a sales assistant and he earns an income selling beds. On the face of it, it may not seem particularly inspiring, and yet within two minutes of chatting with him I learned four things: 1) Dylan is enthusiastic about what he does, 2) he knows his product, 3) he believes in the quality of it and 4) can quite happily put his money where his mouth is. When I met him he'd only worked there for about two weeks but - and this is the bit that amazed me - had chosen to use his lunch breaks and personal time to visit local competitor stores. He would test their beds and see how much their staff really knew about their business. I was fascinated by his attitude. It made me think to myself, 'When was the last time you felt that energetic and fired up about what you do?' And the answer is, 'Not in months.' Probably seven, actually, if I'm honest. I had often wondered if maybe my enjoyment of what I do had gone for good and if maybe it was time to move on. Listening to Dylan, though, I began to realise that, maybe, some of the responsibility for making my job more enjoyable had to be mine. I needed to step up. I needed to create, find or foster activities/opportunities that would give me back what I used to love about it all. I came away inspired by Dylan's attitude and determined to take back my joy. Yes, I'm fully aware of how totally dopey that sounds. He made me believe that I could feel that exact same way about something, anything. (I'm hoping like heck that last sentence didn't come across as irony or, worse, apathy). I'm just not sure how, yet. That will be the next step.

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