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Value Added Living

May 5, 2016

“When you get where you’re goin'
Don’t forget turn back around
And help the next one in line
Always stay humble and kind”

Excerpt from Tim McGraw’s new hit song “Humble and Kind.” The song is a beautiful and poignant reminder about unpretentiously enjoying simple, yet meaningful, things in life: visiting family, saying please and thank you, not holding grudges or merely eating a root beer popsicle...akin to stopping and smelling the roses I would imagine is the implication.

However, it’s this last verse which I started my column with this week that touches me every time I hear the song. Reminding me of one of my favorite movies “Pay it Forward” where the premise is to do a good deed for three new people, not the persons who did one for you; hence paying it forward, which was started as a school project by a twelve year old. In the movie it became a movement sweeping across the country. A similar gesture as turning back around and helping the next one in line as McGraw’s song humbly requests.

Although we often think of the word help as performing an action such as helping change a flat tire, or helping build a screened porch, mow the lawn, paint a fence or run an errand. Yet help goes beyond just doing good deeds. Help is also offering advice, guidance, or support. In other words, adding value to someone’s life by being there for them in ways that cannot be measured by actions.

What would Barney have done without Andy?

Value added living means believing in someone so completely they believe in themselves. Genuinely loving (caring for) someone by placing their needs above your own adds value to their life. Supporting someone’s dreams or appreciating someone in small ways is very value adding. And doing it all with kindness and humility adds value to your own life.

When I think of humility I remember Sheriff Andy Taylor and how he always stepped aside and allowed someone, usually Deputy Barney Fife, to take the credit. His ongoing kindness and humility stands today as a prime example of value added living. Everywhere he went, everything he did he added value to someone else’s life and he did it with such ease and grace it seemed almost effortless, making the show more appealing to viewers who also benefited by having value added to their lives.

Wouldn’t it wonderful if there were more shows on TV where the underlying theme was kindness, humility and adding value to the lives of others. Instead we are subjected to value depleting shows offering hatred, greed, arrogance, lying, abuse and a list of negativity that goes on and on. Unfortunately these behaviors aren’t uncommon in fact most have become socially acceptable, or at least tolerated. So much so we don’t even notice the value of our own lives draining slowly away as the network’s rating increase.

Yes, television has come a long way since the value adding days of The Andy Griffith Show. However, when someone like Tim McGraw gently reminds us to be humble and kind by making the most of the simple things in life, it, in turn, adds value to our life as well as the recipients of our humble kindness. Make value added living your priority in life. Do it with kindness and humility and the value it will add to your own life will be priceless.

Can you imagine...stepping out of the way with ease and grace?




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