February 11, 2011
I was going to have my first experience in the blog world be serious or a justification of why I am using up the little spare time I do have, doing this. But not.
I figured truth is the way I wanted to begin this journey. So, here’s why.
My big sister made me do it.
Now, for those of you who do not have a big sister, wipe the smirk off your face and stop rolling your eyes. For those of you who do have a big sister, pick yourself up off the floor and be serious for a moment.
I like to think of my sister and I as two very different pieces to the same puzzle. We don’t on first glance look like we would go together, but we do. In simple terms, I would break every law in the world for her. She is my sounding board and my biggest fan.
So, one evening as I was talking about work, the small community I live in and my small victories here and there, she said I should begin a blog. Just start sharing my experiences, my knowledge and skills. Right away I thought, “Yeah, right. There is going to be someone out there who really wants to read what I have to share. Who cares?” But she did not give up. Kept telling me to at least try.
That is what did it for me. I spend many hours convincing people I work with to at least try. We will never know what is possible, if we don’t at least try.
So, there it is.
This is my attempt to get people start imagining what is possible, keep pushing our little rubber tree plants up the hill and doing whatever we can to make a difference. I will most likely also rant, rave and vent. But hey, we all have to sometime.
February 11, 2011
Today was a great day.
What started out as a typical work day, turned out to be a day of inspiration and confirmation that my life philosophy of paying it forward is the best way to go.
My career for the past 15+ years has brought me to this point. I work for a nonprofit association, so I get making do with less; the rollercoaster of events and projects; not to mention the brain drain of constantly scanning the environment for the latest and greatest. But now, I feel like I have found th answer. The true passion for what I do to earn a living.
It is all about empowerment and potential. If you can’t make the connection, then let me explain.
I volunteer as a counselor for The Benefit Bank. If you don’t know what a Benefit Bank is, then Google it. If you think you know what this is all about and think it is about hand outs…think again. This is all about a hand up. We do not charge for our services. We volunteer. We simply assist people who seek it out.
That is what happened today.
I had a gentleman come into my office who was looking for assistance in seeking financial aid to go back to school. It was a simple process and while going through the application, he mentioned he did not file income taxes because he was told by some friends, that he should not or did not have to because he only received unemployment. I suggested we go ahead and file his taxes and see what happens. Well, he was happier than I had seen someone in a long time. By the time we were done with everything he was getting back a nice refund. He could not believe it. He was already happy just to have the assistance filing for student financial aid, but this was over the top.
His pure happiness and gratitude was all I needed to re-confirm that this is what I should be doing. This is how I can make a small difference. Taking the skills and knowledge I have gained over the years to allow someone else to have a chance at making their life better.
A hand up, not a hand out. That’s a great feeling. That is paying it forward.
So what are you doing to make someone’s life better? Do you think it is a hand out or hand up?