Filling Buckets – Slinkard On Success

By: D. A. Slinkard

Not too long ago I was driving an unfamiliar road and came to a crossroad at which I had to make a decision. The path in the road stopped and I had two choices to make. I needed to quickly decide if I would go left or go right. I made my choice and proceeded in a new direction on the road. This is a perfect example of how life goes. The roads we travel rarely stay straight and more times than not we are faced with the crossroads of life at which we must make a decision.

Which path are we going to journey? Will the way I choose be the most direct route in getting to the desired destination? We must be ready to adapt to the changes in the road whether it be crooked roads with no shoulder to rely upon or an open highway. Each day we must be prepared.

The attitude we take on a daily basis is an important part of how we handle each day. It is a true saying that perception is reality because what is reality for you may be a fairy tale for someone else. Likewise, how you or I handle a situation may be easier than how someone else handles it; but ultimately I believe everything in life comes down to the decisions we make and the roads we choose to travel. For the life of me I will always remember teaching our girls they have a choice each day to make. You are either a “bucket filler” or a “bucket dipper.” You are a leader or a follower. These are the crossroads each one of us faces every day of our lives.

You can choose to be the “bucket filler” in the life of someone else which means that as a bucket filler you are someone who helps others out without being asked. These people are also able to generally spread their attitude and caring joy to others. Any person can do this whether it be at school, in the workplace, at home, or even in the community. The opposite of this person is what I would consider the “bucket dipper,” and there are too many of these people in our society. These are the people who dip into our own buckets and rob our good attitudes from us. There are more dippers because in life it is much easier to be negative than it is to be positive.

Due to the nature of so many people being negative, it is important that each day you choose to be a leader. We all have different definitions of what or who a leader is; but at the end of the day if someone is a leader, I do not believe they are going to be swayed by the negativity of someone else. People who are followers, though, tend to be swayed by others and too often fail to be able to take control of their lives. Each day you must be equipped and ready to bounce back when you face the negativity of someone else. You cannot let someone else take control over your joy that you find in your life.

Sometimes you have to be able to stop and just laugh at situations because you will find the world is full of a bunch of crazies. However, no matter what kind of day you are having, you must be prepared to change your mindset. I believe wholeheartedly that what we focus the most upon begins to manifest in our lives. If you focus on negativity, then you are going to receive more negative events in your life. If you focus on the positive, eventually the pendulum is going to swing to the positive spectrum in your life. You cannot control the action and behavior of other people but you can control your action and behavior every day.

What are you going to do? How are you going to make a positive difference in your life? Are you going to be a “bucket filler” or a “bucket dipper”? A leader or a follower? The decision for your life rests solely upon the road you choose, but know there will be twists and turns you will not see coming. You do not have to see the entire road ahead of you but you do need to keep moving forward. That is the only way you will make a difference in your life and in the lives of those around you. Time to fill some buckets!
By: D. A. Slinkard
D.A. Slinkard is the manager of the Athens Staples store