Good to Know-Good to Go!

mary oliverWhat we do matters. Our thoughts, emotions, and actions come along with our knowledge. Caring about others, working toward positive outcomes, and creatively empowering the people around us adds beauty to our lives.

It’s so easy to get caught up in minutia. Details are important but are secondary to the larger mission. Our dream is in play. The purpose of our life pushes and pulls us toward excellence. Setbacks are invitations to clarify. We reassess strengths and weaknesses, assets and liabilities, risk and reward but we will not stop. Our hearts and heads collaborate to reach the goal against all odds. There’s enough inspiration to plow through the darkest day. Enough life-giving energy to manage expected and unexpected challenges.

We value our teams, tribes, and people. We keep things in check. The earth shattering invention, the roll-out of new sophisticated technology, or the novel idea will not be driven by greed or personal gain. We anticipate profits, we must have monetary increase, our projects simply have to succeed. But not at the cost or sacrifice of our relationships. People first is the operational motto. If we conquer the world and lose the ones we love what have we achieved?

We’re busy. What we’re doing is important. We are pressing to accomplish good things. Long hours and hard work can be ever so taxing. Destiny beckons. The limelight shouts our name. We are compelled and driven to make the deal, secure the sale, and process the order. We prepare to make the presentation. We deliver like a boss. We feel it in our bellies. We nailed it. It didn’t work out. What went wrong. Disbelief sucker punches us in the gut. We get another opportunity. It works out this time. Celebration and relief permeates the air we breathe. Ah, the sweet smell of success.

We leave the office, job site, or place of business and head home to the real reasons we try so relentlessly. We never quit because we know the people we care about are depending on us. It’s in our DNA to provide, nurture, and protect them. Delivering emotional support, intellectual stimulation, and a safe place for them to grow, learn, and prosper is priority number one. Even if you’re single you can stop by and hug your grocer (with permission of course) or swing by for take-out and compliment the crew. We can love what we do and we can love why we do it.

You are love. In relationships, business ventures, and casual acquaintances. Love is the foundation we stand on. In every role our dominant characteristic is love. We might fly high or sink low on any given day but if we love in all our ways we see the world as a friendly transcendent experience. Anyone can make ugly, be difficult, cause havoc and harm. But not us. The facts are on our side. If we give love we get love.

Love matters most. It’s good to know – and your good to go!

Pass Me Not!

People watching nathangibbs flickr

Image courtesy of Nathan Gibbs via

I’m a people watcher. I can sit at the mall or a public square and just take in the passers-by. I often ask myself questions as I try to think about this person or that person. They’re just strangers yet we are so inextricably connected. We might never share a word of conversation, make eye contact, or feel anything toward each other but we are sharing life.

The author writes the book, tells the story, and we are moved to tears. We identify with the pain, heartache, and triumph. We recognize their courage, creativity,  and deeply appreciate them inspiring us to live in hope. We create platforms of recognition, bestow accolades, and celebrate their accomplishments. I wonder, when did we start to care?

When we hear a powerful story that brings out the champion in all of us  there is oftentimes isolation, agony, and some sort of abuse  built-in to the story line. On some level it strikes a chord and we rally for the under dog that made it to the top. But what if the author was a passer-by, as we sit watching, when they were actually in the throes of despair? Maybe the little girl being molested, the little boy being beaten, the woman being battered, or the man thinking of suicide passed within inches of us.

Does our interests begin at publishing? Does our support happen the most when it’s needed the least? We don’t usually makes Rock Stars out of people unless there is correlation between our stories. An intimacy transpires when we identify ourselves within the story being told. We are moved by them, because secretly, they are telling our story. They are us! At least enough like us to care about.

I can’t help myself. To me, the magic isn’t in whats being shared as much as it is in sharing itself. This is what we wanted before it happened. Before the nomenclature of terrible injustices, included us on the list of survivors, we wanted people to care. We hope for someone to reach out in kindness and give a hoot about what is going on in our lives. Much crying is done without tears. We often don’t hear the inner wailing until someone acts out or makes it out alive or doesn’t make it at all.


Image courtesy of Timothy K Hamilton via

We know life is not all pain and suffering. It has great joy and celebration too. The best balance isn’t created by extremes. It’s less risky to live from the center. Just suppose being caring, empathetic, and altruistic is the prescription for what ails us. If our caring and sharing does so much after the fact just imagine what it could do before or even during times of brutality. Maybe our ultimate isn’t to walk in sunshine. Maybe, just maybe, it’s dancing in the rain.

I sit watching. Who are you? What are you going through? What’s behind those eyes? That smile? Are you avoiding eye contact for a reason? Are you okay? I need to feel the energy, the inspiration, and the responsibility to not let you walk alone. So that I won’t be alone either. If I’m not careful you will pass by me and we won’t even know one another is there. May I join your party? Who wants to celebrate by themselves? I see you everyday, on the bus, at the store, or in the hall at work. I’d love to know your name.

Pass me not! Caring about you does so much for me!