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  • Writer's picture Treavor Dodsworth CFP®, CPA, CKA®

#2 - Filling Buckets

You know when you read a book and it just sticks with you. You repeatedly reference it over and over even years later. When I was in high school I read the book How Full Is Your Bucket? by Tom Rath and Donald O. Clifton. I have probably thought more about this book than any other (excluding the good book) during my life.

The book discusses the importance of making positive life deposits into the lives of those around you- even complete strangers. Let me give you a simple example. The other day I was in a higher end thrift store (because I love my wife) and one of the workers was complaining about how customers kept leaving clothes in the dressing room. She was negative and she was negatively affecting those around her. I was standing looking at a pair of sunglasses. I could have done what I usually do and just keep to myself but instead I decided to jokingly ask the lady if they would “guarantee” that the sunglasses would keep from damaging my eyes in the upcoming eclipse (I am working on my humor). She laughed, the other attendant laughed, and my wife, semi-embarrassed, smiled. A simple question turned a negative bucket draining moment into a positive bucket filling moment. That is insane to me. Simple words, questions, and smiles can change people’s days. The accumulation of those simple moments can change people’s lives.

There are a few questions I am beginning to ask my clients to help them determine what they value. The other day I went through and answered the questions myself. I kept coming back to this idea of filling others’ buckets. For me, a meaningful life consists of continually filling others’ buckets and introducing others to the true Bucket Filler. This is not something I would say that I excel at currently. I decided to purchase a little clicker to carry around that could one remind me to fill others’ buckets and two allow me to count (remember I am an accountant) whenever I fill others’ buckets.

I challenge you to fill the buckets of those around you. It will improve their day and your day. I would love to hear ways that you or others have successfully filled buckets. Please enter your story below. Hearing your stories will be an encouragement to me.


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