Sunday, December 20, 2015

Life We Spend at Work

DailyGood: The Life We Spend at Work

This tendency to look for ways to improve the lives of others, to want to help others, and enjoy that without expecting anything in return — which I think is at the heart of being a giver — is actually something that does not have to compromise your professional success. Just as you wouldn’t worry that you’re going to be a bad parent if you’re generous. Or you’re going to be a terrible community member if you care about the people who live near you. You can also be an extraordinarily successful professional if you demonstrate concern for the people that you work with.

I had this incredible coach, Eric Best, who said, “Yeah, that’s the bad news. But the good news is diving is a nerd sport, and it attracts all the people who are too slow for track, and too short for basketball, and too weak for football. So if you put in a lot of energy, you could become pretty good at this.”
And that really lit a fire under me, but what was remarkable about Eric was we only had diving season from November through March. And he took countless hours out of his spring, summer, and early fall to coach me, just volunteering. And he said, “As a coach, I will put in whatever you put in.”
And he didn’t get any compensation for it. He really loved diving and he really took joy in helping his divers grow, personally as well as athletically. And, you know, that was really a life-changing experience for me. I ended up getting good enough that I qualified for the Junior Olympic Nationals twice, and...  generosity is a core value in life — the data are actually pretty strong that it may be the core value in life, but we don’t even have to go that far. We can just say it’s one of the most important values that people hold dear

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