At family events, he’s always there with a big, warm smile and strong embrace, ready to share his latest stories or tales from the past. If you happen to be dining with him at a restaurant, when your water glass is empty and the server hasn’t been by with a refill in a timely manner, he’s looking for her – if she doesn’t show up soon, you can bet he’ll spring from his chair to flag her down, insisting that she bring along the pitcher. When I needed assistance during a client coaching session recently, he was the guy who eagerly said, “Yes!” without any hesitation or expectation of anything in return; he’s even offered to help “anytime” I need him to in the future, as well. Last week, when my son needed someone to bounce a few college essay ideas off of, his first choice was “Zeyde Max,” just as my first choice had been “Daddy Max” more than 30 years prior. That’s my Pa! Simply put, my dad is always there. He may be the most reliable human I know. In fact, he may just be the most reliable human anyone knows.
Do you have a guy like Max in your life? It’s the person who will be there for you through thick and thin – the person who is always looking out for you. It’s likely someone who you can count on with unfailing reliability, someone who you know has your back no matter the circumstances, someone who is always there. Who is it? A family member, a friend, a colleague, a teacher, a neighbor…? Do they perform these simple acts of heroism for all takers or are you their only one? Think about it. Learn from it. Observe how they get it done. Have you expressed and demonstrated your gratitude?
How about turning the tables… for whom are you always there? How do you show up in their life? How do they show up in yours? How does it make you feel to be relied upon? Does it add to or detract from your other responsibilities? Are you consistently dependable? Do you feel appreciated?
When you think about those who are always there for you and those for whom you are always there, it is critical to ensure there is some sense of a mutually beneficial interaction. This is not about quid pro quo or some kind of reciprocity meter. As for myself, I am indebted to my dad for so many reasons. He is definitely my go-to person and I never want to unduly take advantage of his generosity and presence. I hope that, in some small ways, I am also a go-to person for him. When you consider your own relationships, give some thought to ways you can ensure the relationship is bi-directional in nature, and be sure to express your gratitude for all that that person has done for you.
If you would, visit blog.coffeelunchcoffee.com and take a moment to share a few comments with the CLC Community about the person who is always there for you. Oh, and consider leaving a note for my Dad. Today happens to be his 73rd birthday (though you wouldn’t know it; he makes 73 look like the new 43)!
Happy, Happy Birthday, Daddy Max! Thank you for always being there for me – and for everyone! You are appreciated beyond measure and I love you so much.