Help others and expect NOTHING in return, nothing, nada, zip.  Yes it can be done but most shy away from it because it takes you outside your comfort zone. I know your probably thinking it’s easier to take care of yourself then worry about others. The great thing is it happens everyday, across the world. My name is Eric Mitchell and here is my story.

helping-othersOn March 2nd my wife lost her father to cancer, as a husband and a guy known for always trying to make my wife smile it was one of the single most difficult moments of my life. See my wife was on an airplane flying home from San Diego as she boarded her plane she received a call her father was being rushed to the hospital. By the time she landed we had already received word that this would be his last day.

Here is where helping others comes with no expectation of anything in return comes to play. While my wife was flying the crew got word of her tragedy that unfolding and so did the passengers and when they touched down at SFO and pulled to the gate no one got up when the plane stopped, my wife was simply stunned as these people didn’t know her, but they all together decided to let her grab her things and dash of the plane.

This story has moved me since I heard it, and has me wondering why more people are not selfless? Why wouldn’t you want to help someone just because? Do we really need to be rewarded for everything we do? The simple fact is this, it is hard to be selfless, we are a ME driven society. How many conferences do you attend where the speaker talks about how awesome he or she is? Really yay for you …I just paid a ton of cash for a brag fest.

We have far too many scripts reading “Social“ thought leaders. You know the type; they have their wonderful catch phrases that they throw out with the effectiveness of a Russell Wilson Super Bowl goal line pass. These folks are simply around to spew scripts and drop mikes and get paid.  To be a leader in today’s social society you must be authentic, you must be engaging and you must be selfless. Yes you must be selfless, help others without expecting anything in return. I know your asking yourself “Okay Eric, how do I do this?” The answer is simple and yet probably difficult for some. Simply help people, be human, engage one another and be real. We as humans are designed to want to communicate with one another need proof just take a look around watch a couple use sign language, laugh, have fun, jump on Meerkat and watch Vincenzo Landino sing for you or Carlos Gil show you around San Francisco.

We live in amazing times, never before have we been able to connect with so many so quickly. We have the power to choose what imgreswe watch and how long we watch the podcast and what we listen to without commercials. We can share sunsets from Carmel with people from Australia and Toronto; we can watch Bryan Kramer and Brian Fanzo stroll through SXSW. And we can do it all by being educational and truly helping so many with teachable moments in real time. This is a great time to be alive and an even better time to grow as humans. As Kare Anderson suggests, we need to stop promoting me and move to a WE society. If we are to grow, we need to grow through mutuality for each other.

In closing I leave you this awesome example of selflessness, in the late hours of March 2nd after my father in law had passed, one of his daughters went into his office and sitting in plain sight was a folder. The folder contained all the info needed in order to make sure his wife of 45 years would be ok. With cancer beating him up daily for 5 months straight, Big Bruce made sure to take care of others, and at his funeral 400 people showed up. Why you ask, cause the man was known as the guy that would do anything to help others and ask nothing in return.

MY CHALLENGE TO YOU: I challenge each and every one of you that reads this to help someone just one person, this week without any expectation of receiving anything in return.

 

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About Guest Blog Author: Eric L. Mitchell

The founder, creative genius, and unstoppable force behind SocialHangout, Eric L. Mitchell has never been accused of being shy. This hard-charging United States Marine attacks issues with the same enthusiasm and drive he displayed while defending our country. Well-known within the SaaS community and tech circles, Eric is no stranger to the Silicon Valley playbook, having been a founder, acquired (twice), and built start-ups from the ground up. Passion is the word that best describes Eric Mitchell, who currently advises several tech startups and is instrumental in their success. Eric spends his free time rooting winners — the San Francisco Giants.