Blog 2495 – 08.24.2022
The Measure Of A Life
Someone looking at a field of gravestones once remarked that life appeared to be a small dash between two dates, but what is the real measure of a life. Some think it is how much money and power one amasses in a lifetime. Others that it is success in one’s field of endeavor…books published or written about them, awards received, statues and monuments erected to honor their memory. I believe the true measure of wealth and of life is not how much money or power we have amassed, but by how much and by how many we will be missed.
In 1936 Dale Carnegie published a book that sold a lot of copies and that is still read today called How To Win Friends And Influence People. Some would-be sales people and politicians think it is a bag of tricks to get money and power, but I think it is what it’s title suggests, several great suggestions on how to win friends and influence people. It is a great read on how to live a great life, a life that will be so missed that as Dale says in so many words “Even the undertaker will cry real tears at your funeral.”
Years later some other author coined the term “fake it till you make it.” I am sure more than a few started practicing Mr. Carnegie’s techniques for money and power only to realize the real rewards they bring, a host of friends and a real and lasting influence for good in the lives of others.
Ten years after Dale Carnegie’s book came out, movie director Frank Capra made a movie from another well read little book called “It’s A Wonderful Life.” In the movie George Bailey sacrifices his dreams of travel and adventure to make a difference in the small town of Bedford Falls. Miserly Mister Potter thinks he is the riches man in town, but George is shown at the lowest point of his life, when he thinks his family and friends would be better off if he had never been born, what the measure of a wonderful life really is. His World War Two Navy pilot hero younger brother says it all at a Christmas party, where friends and neighbors gather to bring funds to bail George out of big trouble that absent-minded Uncle Billy got him into, when he raises a glass in a toast to his big brother and says, To George Bailey, the richest man in town.
“He (or she) who has friends is truly rich.”
Your friend and fellow traveler,
Thank You For Being A Friend