I’m generally a “glass-half-full” kind of guy. I try to stay upbeat, positive and balanced in my approach to business and life. But even the most optimistic types have to wrestle with real world issues of work, family and life. Today was just beautiful here in North Texas. Over a plate lunch of Tex-Mex, I looked out through the restaurant window and noticed across the street a playground full of children, probably not more than 4 or 5 years old. They were playing, running, jumping and making full use of the slides, ladders, swings and merry-go-rounds. They were enjoying the day the way that only small children can. No worries about unemployment, the national debt, crime rates, tax credits, fuel prices or Afghanistan. I set my fork down, and for a few moments let my mind wander as I watched from a distance. Now, I don’t have clinical proof, but I could almost guarantee you that my heart rate slowed, my blood pressure dropped, and my mood improved dramatically just sitting there, as my mind drifted back to easier, more innocent times.
Maybe we could learn something from the children. I’m not the first person to make this observation. Robert Fulghum wrote a bestseller a few years ago titled, All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten. In his book, Fulghum notes that wisdom is not taught in graduate schools, but on the “sand pile at Sunday School.” There we learn to share, play fair, don’t hit, put things back, don’t take what isn’t yours, say you’re sorry, wash your hands, flush, take naps, watch out for each other, hold hands and stick together.
It’s been noted that while we might know the cost of something, do we really know its value? We teach children all about reading, writing and arithmetic, but I think we could relearn from kids about sharing, caring and the Golden Rule. Perhaps monkey bars should be standard-issue equipment in business and government?
Christmas will be here shortly, and I hope that you and your family have a wonderful holiday season. The kids will soon be tearing through carefully arranged ribbons and bows in search of Santa’s treasures. Take time to let your mind wander back to happy times when all you really cared about was keeping up with the other kids on the playground.
It’s an honor to have served another year as the general manager of your electric cooperative. From all of us here at Farmers Electric Cooperative, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!