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The Bus Driver: Doing Work That Matters


Woman Looking outside the window of a bus

I once heard a story about a bus driver in New York City. His route takes him all over Manhattan, and at his last stop everybody gets off before he drives the bus over the bridge to Long Island where the bus is parked overnight.

As he arrives at his last stop, he tells the people on the bus that he knows life is difficult and many of them are taking home a day of difficulties, burdens, anxieties, and conflicts. So, holding out his hand, he suggests that as they step off the bus, they drop all the problems of their day into the palm of his hand, leaving all their problems with him so they don’t take them home to the people they love the most.

He tells them that he’ll take their burdens and drive them across the bridge so that they don’t have to carry them around anymore.

My question to you… do you think the bus driver felt his job was to just drive people around town, or something bigger?

My question to you (x 2)... do you think your job is to just (fill in the blank)… or something bigger?

FIVE THINGS FOR DOING WORK THAT MATTERS:

1.        Connect with Purpose: Reflect on the deeper purpose behind your work. What impact do you have on others, your community, or the world? Identify one way in which your job contributes to something meaningful beyond its immediate tasks, and focus on that aspect today.

2.        Practice Empathy: Make an effort to understand the perspectives and experiences of your coworkers and customers. Take a moment to listen actively, offer support, or lend a helping hand to someone in need. By connecting with others on a human level, you'll see the broader impact of your interactions in the workplace.

3.        Share Your Expertise: Offer your skills and knowledge to support a cause, organization or educational institution outside of work. Whether it's volunteering your time to mentor someone in your community, sharing your expertise with a local nonprofit, or participating in a skills-based volunteering project, you can use your professional talents to make a positive impact beyond the office walls.

4.        Pay It Forward: Identify one way in which your job directly or indirectly benefits others outside of your workplace. It could be through providing essential services, creating products that improve people's lives, or contributing to initiatives that address social or environmental challenges. Once you've identified this impact, find a way to pay it forward today by supporting a related cause, making a donation, or volunteering your time to make a difference in the lives of those who benefit from your work.

5.        Inspire Others: Lead by example and inspire others to use their jobs as a force for good. Share your experiences, successes, and challenges with others to motivate them to find purpose and fulfillment in their own work. By being a positive role model and encouraging others to make a difference, you're helping to create a community of changemakers who are committed to making the world a better place, both inside and outside of the workplace.

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