Doing our bit
Many years ago when I was driving a minicab in London for the largest well know cab company Addlee to support my studying and to build up my coaching practice.
I decided for no other reason than I would be bored sitting at home watching endless repeats of endless reruns of films and sitcoms on tv added to the mix that my children were elsewhere on Christmas day that I would work. As there was no public transport I thought somewhat selfishly that I could earn some decent money! How wrong I was going to be.
I set the alarm for 4 am for a 5 am pick up, my first job was two lovely young ladies who were nurses going to start their shift at Great Ormand Street children’s hospital, they were very grateful for the service that my company offer ( I don’t think they charge or give it at a reduced rate) to essential workers.
After dropping them off, I found myself in White Chapel an area of east London I know well as I was born there. I was on the way to my next pick up, and as I turned the corner into Hessle street, there in front of me stood Batman and Robin and two jugglers who were my next fair. It turned out these young people were giving up their free time in order to bring some laughter and happiness to children in a hospital. They were doing their bit.
Throughout the day I picked up various other people doing their bit and giving of themselves. When I got home that evening and looked at what I had earned, I felt guilty that I was not doing my bit.
So, I decided that I would give some of my earnings from that day to charity.
Over the following years, I have done my bit on Christmas day, and when people ask me why I am working on Christmas day, I relate the story and tell them that I give some of my earnings to charity, I don’t tell them to win browny points, or that I am some sort of saint, and usually, the passenger ends up giving me an extra tip to add to my charity.
The point is I do it to raise their awareness, to bring into focus something that was in their blind spot, their unconsciousness for them to look deep within themselves to probe and prick in order to surface thoughts, feeling, emotion, ideas and dare I say passion, essentially in a nut shell that’s what coaching is all about. Raising our awareness.
And as a coach, I would not be doing my job by letting them off the hook by just giving me money for charity. It is for them to give of themselves in a meaningful way. It is for them to do their bit.
And doing our bit is to do it on a regular basis not just at Christmas. It makes me question human generosity when we take the homeless off the streets for Christmas give them food, shelter, hot bath, and clean cloths only to turf them out on January 2nd thinking well, we have done our bit.
The really important things, the things that matter have to be done more than just a bit!
Have merry Christmas, peace and goodwill to you all.