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"The price of freedom is eternal vigilance."

...............................................................Thomas Jefferson


Monday, May 5, 2008

Garbage Truck Wisdom

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Source unknown for this on the toobz, but here's a bit of the kind of philosophy we could use a little more of as we contemplate the week. Whatever the outcome of the weather forecast or the big game or the final exams or the proposal or the...oh, what's that you say?...a couple of important primaries tomorrow?

Yeah, doesn't hurt to remind ourselves from time to time...garbage in, garbage out. And a special hat tip today to all the folks in blue collars who haul away the garbage and take on the dirty jobs that keep this country hummin' along.

Here's the lesson learned in the back of a New York City taxi cab sixteen years ago:

I hopped in a taxi, and we took off for Grand Central Station. We were driving in the right lane when, all of a sudden, a black car jumped out of a parking space right in front of us. My taxi driver slammed on his brakes, skidded, and missed the other car's back end by just inches!
The driver of the other car, the guy who almost caused a big accident, whipped his head around and he started yelling bad words at us.

My taxi driver just smiled and waved at the guy. And I mean, he was friendly. So, I said, "Why did you just do that? This guy almost ruined your car and sent us to the hospital!"

And this is when my taxi driver told me what I now call, "The Law of the Garbage Truck."

"Many people are like garbage trucks. They run around full of garbage, full of frustration, full of anger, and full of disappointment. As their garbage piles up, they need a place to dump it. And if you let them, they'll dump it on you.

When someone wants to dump on you, don't take it personally. You just smile, wave, wish them well, and move on. You'll be happy you did."

So this was it: The "Law of the Garbage Truck."

I started thinking, how often do I let Garbage Trucks run right over me? And how often do I take their garbage and spread it to other people: at work, at home, on the streets? It was that day I said, "I'm not going to do it anymore."

I began to see garbage trucks. Like in the movie "The Sixth Sense," the little boy said, "I see Dead People."

Well, now "I see Garbage Trucks." I see the load they're carrying. I see them coming to drop it off. And like my Taxi Driver, I don't make it a personal thing; I just smile, wave, wish them well, and I move on.

One of my favorite football players of all time, Walter Payton, did this every day on the football field. He would jump up as quickly as he hit the ground after being tackled. He never dwelled on a hit. Payton was ready to make the next play his best. Good leaders know they have to be ready for their next meeting.

Good parents know that they have to welcome their children home from school with hugs and kisses. Leaders and parents know that they have to be fully present, and at their best for the people they care about.

The bottom line is that successful people do not let Garbage Trucks take over their day.

What about you? What would happen in your life, starting today, if you let more Garbage Trucks pass you by?

Here's what I think. You'll be happier.

Life's too short to wake up in the morning with regrets, so....Love the people who treat you right. Don't worry about the ones who don't. Believe that everything happens for a reason. If you get a chance, TAKE IT! If it changes your life, LET IT! Nobody said it would be easy....They just promised it would be worth it!


3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Sandy--

Thanks, I needed that.The analogy is great . . . and yes, I see myself as the garbage truck. Think I'll try to see if I can't lighten my load a bit--without dumping it on others.

Melody

Chris said...

Thanks for posting this great story! My name is Chris, and I work with David J. Pollay, the author of The Law of the Garbage Truck™ - Beware of Garbage Trucks™! I just wanted to stop by and let you know that you can read the original story on David’s blog davidjpollay.typepad.com I know he’d love to have you stop by!

Also check out the video of people in New York City taking the No Garbage Trucks!™ Pledge: bewareofgarbagetrucks.com. It’s pretty cool.

Thanks again!

Chris

chris@bewareofgarbagetrucks.com

Prairie Sunshine said...

Thanks for stopping by and sharing this link! We appreciate knowing the source...and sharing it via your comment with our readers.