The month of May is a time of the year when the Gulf Coast section acknowledges and celebrates the contributions of many of our volunteers. A benefit of volunteerism within the SPE GCS is the opportunity to build and strengthen your reputation by increasing the level of respect from others. It’s been said that the key to a good reputation is character, and that a person’s character is like a fence, it cannot be strengthened with paint. Earning the respect of others is found through integrity, humility, dependability, priority living, generosity, and spirituality. Integrity is a cornerstone of the foundation of respect. Respectable people do not tell lies. In regards to humility, it’s been said to be humble or you’ll stumble and anyone who listens to correction is to be respected. Don’t brag; remember that it isn’t the whistle that pulls the train. Respect is also earned through dependability, which is the greatest ability of all. Being dependable means being there because you gave your word. The challenge occurs in the defining moments when it isn’t necessarily convenient to spend time doing what you promised to do. In regard to priority living, respect comes from setting and working on goals that are worthy and good. Respect is also earned through generosity. Givers make the difference, and we should do our giving while we are living. Lastly, respect is earned through spirituality. Put God first, and know that good people will be remembered as a blessing. Remember that life is a journey and that earning the respect of others occurs day by day, moment by moment, along this path. Know that the resulting optimism spawned through growing your respect is more than just an attitude. As Andy Greenberg has stated, “It’s a self-fulfilling prophecy.”

Please join me on Tuesday, May 17th at the Gulf Coast Section Awards Banquet where Steve Turk will be our keynote speaker as we honor our volunteers, special award winners, and scholarship winners.