The chair of a hospital committee that I later chaired myself once said that we were all there to make a difference. The members of the committee were not always on the same page. Unlike the chair, many did not see the big picture; some were biased by their own special interests and local concerns.
My predecessor, of course, was referring to positive change. In fact, one of his mottoes was to leave things better than how he found them. He gave as an example how he cleans up public washrooms. While others don’t flush, leave a mess and contaminate door knobs, he would clean up the sink, pick up the litter and leave the room sparkling. I didn’t ask if he signed the janitor’s log on the wall.
Most visitors to a public restroom look after their own personal business. Some are flagrant in their disregard for the collateral damage of that business. Hence, the sticky floors, toilet seats and doors.
What would our world be like if we not only aimed to please and cleaned up after ourselves and others? What if we all thought more about who will follow us?
As we each walk the journey of this day, we have many choices. We can leave things as they are and leave the clean up to someone else, we can make a mess and walk away, or we can make things better.
Your legacy may be something big: your life’s work, or your legacy may be how you live each day, making a positive difference in small yet meaningful ways and shining a light on the people you know and those whom you will never meet.