Feeling down? Here's a simple antidote!
Jake handled odd jobs, like going to the store for more carbon paper (imagine!) or typewriter ribbon (what's that?!). Back then, there were no computers or email, so if we had a signed application that needed a quick delivery, Jake would drive it to the underwriter for us.
Jake always had a smile. He loved telling stories. He loved talking about his wife, their kids (who were grown by then) and his days in the military. He often offered words of wisdom.
One piece of advice I'll never forget. I can still hear Jake making this recommendation when one of our coworkers was complaining to us. Life just wasn't going her way. She said she was miserable, in a rut, and didn't know how to get out.
Jake listened, then paused briefly before speaking. His words still resonate in my head.
"If you're feeling down," Jake said. "Do something nice for someone else."
My coworker and I looked at each other. What? What did he say? Then we looked back at Jake.
"Try it," he said, smiling. "You can't feel down when you are making someone else happy."