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CEO Messages

On the Sunny Side of the Street

“Grab your coat and get your hat, leave your worries on the doorstep. Just direct your feet to the Sunnyside of the Street.” – Dorothy Fields

One of my favorite songs of all time is the title of this theme: On the Sunny Side of the Street. This song to me is timeless. It was written in 1930, but even though it is old, I encourage everyone to go home and google a video…my favorite is the one by Louis Armstrong! Every time I hear it, I sing along to some extent, and it gives me a little joy and my approach to the day seems that much better. (I know The Pogues also had a song of the same name…but that’s not my song.)

The essence of the song is to see the world as a wonderful place where each of us can contribute in our own way and be respected, happy and thankful for our existence. We all must deal with the adversities of life, and we must certainly tackle those with determination, diligence, and persistence, because we are responsible for our actions and the outcomes of those actions. That said, if we understand that everyone must deal with uncertainties and individual hardships, we will come to know that we are not alone in our travails, but maybe we are more alike than we would like to admit.

The song tells you to try to leave those daily distractions and issues behind and concentrate more on what is good in life not what is bad. Of course, it’s easy to say forget those things when, in fact, you actually DO have to deal with the cards life has thrown you. That said, a lot of us negatively over-think things that are not as bad as we make them. We often make mountains out of mole hills and make ourselves miserable. As the song says, “I used to walk in the shade with those blues on parade”. If you carry those blues, you will never be happy …one must let them go sooner rather than later. Certainly, as I alluded to before, the BIG things we must make right, but the numerous little irritations that occur on a daily, weekly, monthly basis, we should stop, take a breath, reflect, and then move on to the Sunny Side of the Street. Stay away from those dark clouds.

Relationships (professional or personal) certainly can carry a Santa’s bag of gifts, both positive and negative. Within these relationships, many of us get carried away over trivial things rather than see the bigger picture which in most cases is a very positive wonderful experience with that person. Of course, if it doesn’t work out, perhaps it just wasn’t meant to be, and we must move on. I was blessed that my parents were married 59 years before my Dad passed away and my wife’s parents were together 62 years. I can assure you they were not always in a state of marital bliss, but they overlooked short-comings and worked together through the tough times to live most of the time on the Sunny Side of the Street. My own 41st Anniversary was this month and when I reflect back over those years, if I had let the shady side of the street with those blues on parade rule our marriage, we never would have lasted. Instead, my wife has been a gift and our marriage a wonderful journey because we always chose to be on the Sunny side of the street and look at the positives of what we were together and the impact we had on others rather than dwelling on the few “blues” that wanted to spoil our parade.

So, I encourage each one of you to “Grab your coat and get your hat, leave your worries on the doorstep and just direct your feet to the Sunnyside of the Street.” It’s much more fun, you’ll have more laugh lines, you’ll enjoy your job and life more and you will keep those blues as inconsequential blips in your life. If we all do that…we would coexist better and we would be more united in our approach with each other and “the world would be a better place…for you…and me…” But that’s another song!

God Bless and Remain Unconquered,