I was talking with my dad a little while back. We talked about how at his work he was the single person to nominate a coworker and how taken aback he was that absolutely no other person he worked with took the time to send an email and recognize someone. If people keep on complaining about how they don’t get recognized and grumble more awards should be given out then why don’t they delve into the opportunity to nominate others?
It was baffling to my dad and sad for me to hear of his coworkers had put forth no effort in uplifting their peers. Experiencing this, my dad had become more winded in his efforts to do good for his company, he was starting to see less of a point in championing an effort to make a more communal and connected work culture.
This is one of the aspects of my father that I highly respect and quietly am awed by. My father is constantly attempting to challenge the status quo and raise the atmosphere that he’s a part from mediocrity and into one of joy and fun. Sometimes my cynicism gets in the way of my seeing this about him, but it’s all there. He will randomly spurt out an idea of his with enthusiasm or tell a raunchy joke that lightens the mood and makes me smile without fail.
At his work, he fully engages in the tasks at hand. I continually hear him talk about reaching out to coworkers and listening to their problems and helping them out. Recently he helped connect another coworker with a new job opportunity asking nothing in return.
Anyway, the idea that my dad’s engagement at his job is in danger of faltering kind of got me to cynically question his goodness. As weird as that sounds after me writing about how nice my dad is, I just kind of got on this idea that to be ‘good’ was really an endeavor into the relentless war to make others happier, no matter how endless or hard the battle is. Doing good is a fantastic thing, something to be proud of and continue doing, whether any change becomes of it or not. I somewhat got annoyed that my dad wasn’t fully recognizing this.
I sometimes, in a bit of naivety and arrogance think that people must be 100 percent selfless in order to be an honest knight of spreading happiness and good in the world. But I don’t think that’s realistic. People need self-love, I know that much, but it’s not easy to be engaged in doing good deeds while receiving little to nothing in return.
My dad has been striving to make his workplace culture better for the years he has worked there. And he is faltering not only because he is not receiving a return on his efforts, but because that seems to be a sign that his efforts aren’t succeeding as much as he would like. He still sees the same laziness, uninspiring work of his peers, the solely paycheck focused mentality that so defines the workplace in America.
But that’s not a worthy deterrent for a warrior in the fight for goodness, for deeper human connection. Apathy and selfishness will persist and plague society for the foreseeable future. Attempting to be a connected and giving soul may sometimes seem like peeing in an ocean, but my point is that one must recognize that their actions to do good are by themselves something to be proud of. To make someone happy, or to even attempt to make someone happy are monumental achievements.
That’s the mentality that I see in a whole bunch of souls that I hope to replicate in myself. There are those gorgeous people that I’ve (and likely you have too) come across who seemingly live to serve, they almost have no desires except the need to see others happier. It’s inspiring to come across someone like that.
I hope that my dad’s effort to serve other’s and better his environment are renewed in spirit and he sees that what he is doing is good in itself. And I also hope that I can become one of those people, those people who can live a life free of all but one simple desire; to make others happy.