I was watching a Taiwanese travel program, and the host chatted with an old grandma he met on the train, who religiously traveled every day for 50 years to buy daily groceries for her family. What can we learn from her?
The host boarded the first train at the station, 5.10 AM to be exact. It was pitch dark, and the host went into the cabin and saw a few passengers. He sat down besides a serene old grandma with an empty grocery basket and an umbrella.
The old grandma was probably in her 70s, and had a serene and benign smile that showed no signs of her difficult early life. She was given away by her birth family at an early age, but through hard work and discipline, her children and grandchildren are all successful and happy.
And yet, for the past 50 years, she woke up every day at 4.30 AM (except Mondays), to travel from her small town to the train station, took the train to a transit bus station, then took a bus to the market to buy groceries. All out of a labor of love for her family. Even as her gait was slow and slightly limp, you could only find a serene joy when you look at her.
In the fast-paced world today, all too often at our workplace, we find many younger people complaining about the difficulties of their lives. And many younger people are social media enthusiasts and bloggers, ranting and raving about their daily lives. Do a random read, and you will most likely find writings on material purchases, relationships, jobs, and so on. There are very few online writings that inspire and transfigure us when we read them, that tell us about fighting challenges in life with a smile and an inner strength.
We can all surely do with more inspiration, more motivation, more spirit, and more heart. We can all learn from the old grandma who religiously traveled to and fro from hom for the past 50 years to buy food for her family, with discipline, with inner strength, and with love.
Dr Seamus Phan is the Head of Content and CTO at McGallen & Bolden. He is an expert in branding, marketing, communication, leadership training, crisis management, and entrepreneurship. This article may appear concurrently on his blog. Connect on LinkedIn. ©1984-2018 Seamus Phan et al. All rights reserved.