Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Doing Well By Doing Good

Dr. Carl Menninger, the founder of the world-famous Menninger Clinic, was once asked what could be done to heal depression. He said, “Lock your door and go to the poorest part of your town and help someone.”

In tight times it’s so easy to increasingly look inward and focus on your own problems to the exclusion of what is going on around us. Doing something good for others takes us out of our shrinking little nest of problems and allows us to reach out…literally and figuratively…into a larger world or other people and of hope.

Also, “service contains it’s own satisfaction” according to writer Ruth Deaton. When we are not getting warm fuzzies from life we can create our own by doing something good for someone else.

You don’t have to write a big check, spend hours at a soup kitchen, or save the world. What you can do is catch someone in a service profession doing something right and praise them, assist someone in a small task (think Boy Scouts helping someone across the street), or contact someone who has helped you in life and thank them. Try this: do something good and don’t let the recipients of the effort know you did it. Simply make someone’s life easier for the sake of the effort.

A Perfect Workday is not just about work. Find one moment in the day to help someone and you get closer to perfect.

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