I was recently reminded of a watercolor of clouds I once saw hanging over the host station in a newly-opened, Chinese restaurant in Los Angeles. Because of its beauty, I asked about it. The manager said it was a pre-opening gift from a friend of the owner. I asked him to translate the included script. He said, “The customers are like the clouds.” Seeing the look on my face he continued, “Some are stormy, some are beautiful, and some pick up the colors around them.  Sometimes there are no clouds and no customers.”  We both laughed.

Our lives are like watercolors. What we do wicks across the paper of our world and impacts the way other folks color theirs. Other than a hermit in a small cabin in the woods, completely off the grid, this condition of interaction is universal. Now, because of social media, you can post an article about self-esteem on your page and have a positive impact on a 12-year-old girl in Norway. She has been learning English in school for four years and has been using your Facebook page to practice. She got much more than a little language training. Her life has been changed.

A watercolor does not become art until the artist picks up the brush. We do not influence others at a high level until we decide to do so. Your gift may be teaching, writing, befriending, cooking, organizing others, or art production. It doesn’t matter what it is. What matters is what you do with it. Here is the neat bonus; you probably enjoy most of what you do best. Like the musician said, “I can’t believe I get fabulously paid for what I love doing!”

“There is no try. There is only do.” — Yoda

Remember, “The customers are like the clouds.”


By Bob Bekins




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