As my wife and I traveled to a funeral for an extended family member, I had time to reflect. on a recent post about the “Second time you die,” meaning when the last person who remembers you passes away, you die for a second time. The point of the post is how do you wish to be remembered?
My cousin Joe passed away after a life well lived. He was a devout man who loved his wife and family. He also gave back to his community, his church and his profession. One of three wonderful eulogies noted he was a “servant leader” meaning a leader is measured by how many people he helps, not vice versa. That is a wonderful way to be remembered.
Remembering Joe reminded me of some truisms we should not forget. Here are a few to digest and offer feedback on:
If you get up with an attitude of let’s make it a great day, you have a better chance of fulfilling that prognostication. The opposite attitude is also true.
If you have the impression kindness is a weakness, then you could not be more wrong. Reread the comment above about servant leadership. A great leader deflects credit to others and asks how can I help?
If you go looking for trouble, don’t be surprised if you find it or it finds you. Some people place themselves in harm’s way and are surprised when harm befalls someone, even them.
If you surround yourself with people who care less you about you and more what they can use you for, get new friends or acquaintances.
If you feel you are the odd person out, then you often are. There is an old saying that when three adolescents find themselves alone, one often becomes the foil. Don’t be anyone’s fool.
If you treat people the way you want to be treated, do not be surprised if you are treated well in return. A very old book called this rule “golden.” You can actually disarm people or lessen tension with kindness.
If you remember this saying, people will pay more attention to what you have to say. You have two ears and one mouth, use them in that proportion.
If you give to others, it usually pays you a psychic income in return. Feeling better about yourself, especially when you give anonymously is an amazing gift to you and the recipient..
If you put someone down to elevate yourself, it will usually come back to haunt you. One thing is for certain, the person who is being put down will always remember it. Some may be slow to act, but they won’t forget.
If you work for an employer who treats people poorly when they exit, get your resume together and look for another job, as that could be you someday. Treating people with dignity matters.
If you take away only two things – remember that golden thing and the two ears and one mouth proportion and you will do fine. These are just a few thoughts to contemplate. Let me know what you think. Tell; me a few others that spring to mind.
Joe, you are remembered well by many. If there was any doubt, I have rarely if ever witnessed a minister choking back the tears during a eulogy.