I was thinking back to a situation that occurred about 5 years ago. I was managing a Starbucks and one of my regular customers was a car enthusiast. He had a 2004 Porsche 911 Turbo S (a $140,000 car mind you) and man did he keep this thing sharp. He consistently cleaned it, treated the leather seats, and made sure to do the proper washing and waxing to keep things immaculate. He and I got to talking about what we liked about cars and he (very unexpectedly) gave me the keys and told me to take it for a spin.
Yes, he wanted me to test drive it and let me know how it felt. I told him that I’d love to but would be pretty nervous driving someone else’ car, especially one that was a six-figure car. He convinced me by saying he’d be in the passenger seat. So I did take it out and was caught very off guard by a car that can hit 0-60 in 4.3 seconds! He did make me do a sprint and then some freeway driving and let me tell you I learned a new appreciation for automotive engineering.
A month later I found out that he traded it in for the 2005 model. He then wanted me to drive that one to give my input on the differences. There were some slight model improvements, and he was unsure if it was that significant a difference. I drove that one on the freeway, no sprinting though as there was less than 500 miles on the odometer.
When I got back, we had a good talk about the differences and feel of the car. He then shared that he takes great joy out of sharing what he has in life. He had done very well financially but really thought things were only valuable if they were able to be enjoyed by the people he knew.
I was floored. I think most people who had a $140k+ vehicle would be very protective and worried about their expensive possession, but not him. But that taught me a wonderful lesson. It is easy to get caught up in preserving and protecting but really it is more important to share what you have. If you get over the fear, then you can share what you have/are and then really allow others in too. Life shouldn’t be an exclusive club but really a way to share our experiences and help each other out.
A year later I was at a park and noticed a girl who was having car troubles. I went over to help and assessed it was a corroded battery and needed a jump. At the time I had my Celica GT which happened to be one of her favorite cars. While I was working on getting her car started I unlocked mine, tossed her the keys and told her to check it out. She was floored! I said that it was no big deal and that if she wanted to sit in it and look around the engine. She loved it and said that it would be one of the cars she wanted to get in the future. It was a little thing to me but was just happy to share. Now it wasn’t the same as what I went through, but nice to be able to have a similar impact.
So what would you like to share? What guarded possession or attribute would make someone’s day? What would you need to let go of to share that one thing? It’s an interesting give and take process but one I’d invite you to try out. It’s worth it!