In a little departure from my usual blog posts, I wanted to post a little ramble about something the occured to me today. I want to write this post about what I learned from the cleaner or 'janitor' to those of you using American English.
There's a few cleaners in the building I work at, but this particular cleaner, we'll call him Wayne, is a really special guy. He's taught me a lot about life from how he approaches his own.
1. Always think of others first
Wayne always goes out of his way to make sure that all departments in the building have exactly what they need each day. He has a little cupboard where he keeps an emergency stockpile of hand gels, blue roll, toilet roll and soaps. If one department started to run out of the cleaning stuff that they needed and hadn't planned well enough to make another order - he produces his emergency stock. Throughout his day he's always looking for the little things that he can do to help others.
2. Find the positives in life
Wayne seems to be able to find the positives in everything he does. He has to take the bus home from his late shift at 10.30pm at night, and then walk twenty minutes home at the end of his bus route. For most people, that would be something worth complaining about, but not Wayne. The very last conversation I had with Wayne was about this very thing. He told me that it's great that he gets the last bus and has to walk home at 11pm. Why? Because he walks past his local shop just as they discount their doughnuts down to 5 pence each. After a late shift he makes sure to buy two or three to make the most out of his savings - he really likes that about his journey home. Obviously doughnuts aren't great for his health but that positive attitude is amazing for health.
3. It's OK not to speak
Wayne has an innate sense of when someone wants to talk or not. Whenever I'm not in the mood to talk he seems to know and will just give me a small smile as I walk past - even if I think I'm putting a good mask on my emotions. People don't always want or need to talk. Wayne is excellent at the balance between talking when he feels you're in the mood, and leaving to your own thoughts when you need it. Noticing this in people is a great skill to learn and will help you build better relationships - even without speaking.
So thank you Wayne, the janitor, thank you for who you are and all you've taught me when trying to improve myself.
Yours in health,