Service before Self

The Ritz-Carlton hotel chain has a great mission statement “Ladies and gentlemen serving ladies and gentlemen.” Crisp, clear, and to the point. I understand they ask themselves two questions every day:

1. What did we learn from yesterday?
2. What can we do today to make a difference for our customers?

The past is over, the future has not happened. We need to think about what we do today to make a difference for those who walk through the doors of our lives and request service. What can you do today to make a difference in the life of someone else? Start by asking yourself these three questions:

1. Who needs me now?
2. How can I help now?
3. What would I want if I were the person in need?

I believe we are all wired by our creator to serve. When people call out for our help, it’s almost impossible not to help them, especially if they are business associates, friends, or family. By constantly asking yourself these three questions, you will keep yourself in a serving state of mind – thinking about, and looking for, opportunities to serve. Also, when it comes to making a difference, we need to have one hand reaching down to help lift others up. {A thought: Imagine what can happen if multitudes of people were focused on serving each other.}

The first words of Rick Warren’s book The Purpose-Driven Life is profound. He states – “It’s not about you.” I believe he’s right. True happiness in life comes from serving others, but that does not mean that we can devote ourselves to serving others 100 percent of the time. We can’t be of service to anyone if we aren’t taking care of ourselves as we go. Yes, we need to take care of and serve our inner being before we can be of service to another. That isn’t being selfish; it’s being reasonable and responsible.

In closing this blog post – I challenge you to examine your life for the places you have been neglecting to grasp the opportunity to be of service to others; especially through volunteerism within your communities. Take the time to be generous with yourself as well as with others. In the end, you will find yourself more fulfilled and at peace in your life.

Willie Johnson: Performance Improvement Consultant