recently read this story on Facebook about John Joyce who
was giving a new truck. His longtime customer Robert Norton and his
wife Nikki Norton created a GoFundMe account
hoping to help Joyce. Joyce, who is an 83 year old lawn man, has spent the last
few months walking several
miles a day to his customers’ homes to mow their lawns after
the transmission died in his 1994 truck.
I was struck by all the
comments. Most talked about the generosity of those who made the donation
happen. While it is incredible that strangers would rally and help someone in
need in such a way, I think the most important lesson was missed.
The thing to remember is
the incredible work ethic of the person receiving the gift. An 83 year-old man
who still mows lawns in spite of losing his mode of transportation. He wasn’t
sitting on the side of the street begging for a handout. He wasn’t complaining
about having to push is mower for miles just to mow a yard. He was working!!!
How many people today
would continue to work if faced with having to push their lawn mower to and
Mr. Joyce is a hero in in
this day and age. A guy who doesn’t whine about the circumstances he is facing.
He didn’t blame others for his luck. No, he kept his head down and continued to
grind. He worked! Did you catch that? He worked!
When I speak to
communities about community or economic development, I often tell my audiences
that if you need to dig a ditch you start digging. You don’t stand around and
whine about needing help, or how hard it is to dig the ditch. You grab a shovel
and start digging. You dig when no one is looking. You dig when people are
making fun of you for attempting to dig the ditch yourself. You dig when you
don’t feel like digging. And while you are digging, you don’t gripe and
complain about having to dig the ditch yourself. You dig with a smile, like you
know something that they don’t.
When you do this,
something magical happens. Momentum. Action creates momentum and suddenly
people start looking for shovels to help you. Little by little the dirt piles
up and the ditch gets dug. You accomplish your goal. But it all starts with
Y.O.U. you picking up the shovel.
If you want your community
or your county or your state or our country to be great. Inspire those around
you to pick up a shovel by picking one up yourself and digging.
Stop whining about how
others are not helping create the world you want for yourself. Grab a shovel
and start digging! Even if your 83 years old!
Now, go be awesome! Thanks