Beware of Garbage Trucks By David J. Pollay How often do you let other people's nonsense change your mood? Do you let a bad driver, rude waiter, curt boss, or an insensitive colleague ruin your day? Unless you're a robot, you are bound to blow your top off. However, the mark of a sucessful person is how quickly he or she can get back his or her focus on what's important. Sixteen years ago, I learned this lesson. I learn it in the back of a New York City taxi cab. Here's what happen. I hopped in a taxi, and we took off for Grand Central Station. We were driving in the right lane when, all of a sudden, a black car jumped out of a parking space right in front of us. My taxi driver slammed on his brakes, skidded, and missed the other car's back end by just inches! The driver of the other car, the guy who almost caused a big accident, whipped his head around and he started yelling bad words at us. My taxi driver just smiled and waved at the guy. And I mean he was really friendly. So, I said, 'Why did you do that? This guy almost ruined your car and sent us to the hospital!' And this is when my taxi driver told me what I now called, 'The Law of the Garbage Truck'. Many people are like garbage trucks. They run around full of garbage, full of fustration, full of anger, and full of disappointment. As their garbage piles up, they need a place to dump it. If they happen to dump it on you, don't take it personally. You just smile, wave, wish them well, and moved on. You'll be happier if you did that rather than fight them. So this was it: 'The Law of the Garbage Truck'. I started thinking, how often do I let garbage trucks run right over me? And how often do I take their garbage and spread it to other people: at work, at home, on the street? It was that day I said, 'I'm not going to do it anymore.' I see garbage trucks everywhere and everyday. I see the load they're carrying. I see them coming to drop it off. And like my taxi driver, I don't make it a personal thing; I just smile, wave, wish them well, and I move on. Good leaders know they have to be ready for their next meeting. Good parents know they have to welcome their kids home from school with hugs and kisses. Teachers and parents know that they have to be fully present and at their best for the people they care about. The bottom line is that successful people do not let garbage trucks take over their day. What about you? What would happen in your life, starting today, if you let more garbage trucks pass you by? Here's my bet. You'll be happier. So...love the people who treat you right. Forget about the ones who don't. Believe that every thing happens for a reason. If you get a chance, TAKE IT! If it changes your life, LET IT! Nobody said it would be easy... They just promised it would be WORTH IT Cheers! 'Life is short. Enjoy the journey.'