Tom Hendrick, PE
Tom received his Bachelor and Master of Science in Civil Engineering degrees from the University of Oklahoma and is a licensed Professional Engineer in 11…View Profile
Often when asked by friends, colleagues, coworkers or even strangers how I am doing or how my day is going, I greet them with, “It’s another day in paradise”. People often laugh or giggle or say that’s cute. What they actually don’t realize is that I mean it.
Eight to ten years ago I attended an engineering conference in Branson, Missouri. It was a 2-½ day conference held the first week of June. The weather this particular week was beautiful. Engineering conferences aren’t typically real exciting anyway and by the last session of the last day most people had deserted the conference for the pool or the golf course. I couldn’t bring myself to do that for a couple of reasons, but primarily because of the title of the last session was noted in the program as “Another day in paradise”. I was intrigued. What was this going to be about and what did it have to do with engineering? As it turned out, it had nothing to do with engineering but everything to do with life. And in my opinion, those that left the conference early, which were probably 75% of the 100 or so attendees, missed the best session of the conference. The presenter, Scott Hunter, is a former attorney and now a motivational speak, author, consultant and coach. He started his talk that day with a lot of statistics, some of which are repeated here:
There are approximately 7 billion people on the planet.
• 80% of them live in poverty
• 70% are illiterate
• 50% suffer from hunger and malnutrition
• 90% have an annual income of $25,000 US or less
• Only 1% has a university degree
• 1% owns a computer
• 2.4 billion have no access to a toilet
• 3.0 billion people can’t go to a place of worship without fear
The list of statistics went well beyond this, but I think you get the picture. The message that day was pretty simple. Stop complaining, stop blaming, stop criticizing and stop moaning. Be grateful for everything: that you wake up in the morning, have a bed to sleep in and a house to live in, clothes to wear, and food to eat, a car to drive, roads to take you where you want to go, a job to go to, people you love and who love you. You are better off than a very large percentage of the 7 billion or so people on the planet, probably at least 90% of them. How lucky is that? The message had a huge impact on me and I try to live by it every day.
So if you want to be successful; wake up to the reality that you are truly blessed and already have a pretty amazing life. Be grateful. It will make you happy when you are grateful. And that will help attract you to things that will continue to make you happy.
Tomorrow when you wake up, I hope you will realize it truly is another day in paradise.