“The smallest good deed is better than the grandest good intention.” Duguet.
Having done time management to death for a wee while, I am reverting to promotion of the effective tenets of The Three Resolutions as I have reviewed, amended, added to and then re-published the book of the same name, available in paperback or Kindle.
The Three Resolutions propose that there are three commitments an individual can make in an effort to live a principled life. Those three commitments build upon each other, and while some may say they are common sense my response would be that ‘common sense is not common practice’, which is not me being clever, it was Stephen Covey who said it to me first.
Others may look at the subject matter and contents page and say, “I’m doing that already.” I know. Lots of people on LinkedIn are ‘doing’ a lot of that stuff. But I bet they aren’t doing it all, any more than I am. Yes, folks, I hereby acknowledge the imperfection in my dedication to applied common sense.
Ultimately, and without going through the whole Three Resolutions process, the end objective of the The Three Resolutions commitment is service to others, hence my quote. If i was to ask you the names of people who dedicate themselves to the service of others I am positive you would identify many a celebrity or other ‘name’ who clearly do serve in a charitable fashion.
But when I talk of service to others I am not focused solely on people who get great public acknowledgment (and publicity) for their efforts. I also mean the old lady in the charity shop: the man on a motorbike delivering blood: the lollipop man or woman interrupting their day to keep children safe: the administrator whose accurate records and good memory detects a murder (did happen): and many more unsung providers of service to others.
I’m often amused how someone at the top of their game being paid many thousands of pounds gets a medal for their service to their profession when the lower ranks who work harder, physically, get diddly squat. Their service is just as, if not arguably more, valuable than the knight’s.
The principle, for me, is this – service provided, whether for payment or for free, is service. There are no levels of superiority of service. However, there are services provided purely out of self-interest that I do NOT consider to be service at all. There is no harm in application of a ‘What’s In It For Me’ approach, because the answer could merely be ‘It’s the right thing to do and in keeping with my values system’, but when the question is asked and answered wholly in a ‘if there’s not enough in it for me I’m not interested’ manner – service it ain’t.
Going above and beyond the call, is service. Being paid for and doing a good, professional job, is service. Anything done completely out of self-interest, is not.
That is selfishness.
It’s just occasionally annoying how selfish people get rewarded, but they never said life is fair.
To paraphrase Mother Teresa, “Life is sometimes unrewarding: serve anyway.”
What will you do today, to serve?
For more on the subject, buy m’book on Kindle or hardcopy through the above links.