Doug Shockley is GES' Vice President Client Relations and Global Events...

I had an unfortunate event happen to a friend of mine over the weekend. His father passed away. My friend told me he just sat there and watched helplessly while his father died. We then proceeded to have a long talk about his feelings and life in general. I was very interested in his observations as my own father is not in the best of health himself.

He told me of sitting in the room holding his father’s hand talking to him about his new son and two other children. He spoke to his father about all the things the children had done during the week and what a great time the children were having in school and their after school activities. The problem my friend had is that it was only a one way conversation. He had arrived at the hospital six hours too late and his father has passed into a coma. 

This is what started the discussion about how everything matters. My friend said he sat in the waiting area by himself for hours thinking of all of the great things his father had taught him and the fun they had during the course of his life. We talked about all of the things he might have done with his father to create more of the great memories, but my friend said somehow he had gotten too busy.  

Everything we do in life matters to someone; to your spouse, your children, fellow employees or our parents. People take away from us our interactions and create their memories of us and our actions. You can’t take back harsh words or an e-mail written in haste, or try to do something again just to make it better. There are no do-overs in life and no re-takes like in the movies. This is the real deal. 

We need to make sure what we do and how we act and interact with other people is civil. Was what happened really worth losing your temper? Why did he get into an argument with his dad over something so small that today he couldn’t even remember what it was about? Live your life; share your feelings; call a friend and say hello; read a book to a child, because you know what… it matters. Everything matters. 

My friend promised he would look at things differently now. Smile more; worry less. Live life more and remove the stress by injecting a little goodness into everything and everyone he would come into contact with. He knows everything matters.