Max Ehrman’s remarkable poem Desiderata concludes with this illuminating guidance:

“With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be cheerful. Strive to be happy.”

That’s advice worth remembering, especially on days when life’s Crapola Machine shifts into high gear. And if you toil in senior living, they can be all too common.

For this sector seems to be a magnet for a wide variety of bliss busters. They include unexpected challenges, increasing competition, heavy-handed oversight and staffing nightmares. And that’s just the tip of the dirt-berg.

Still, at its core, senior living can be truly inspiring. And one reason for that is the field is over-represented by people whose commitment can lift us all.

Sadly, their inspiring actions tend to earn far too little notice or recognition. That changes, starting now.

I strongly urge you to enter someone on your staff who is doing truly inspiring work into our next McKnight’s Women of Distinction Awards program. We have created a new honor, the Spirit Award, for this specific purpose.

The Spirit Award is open to women working in senior living who have demonstrated acts of bravery, courage, perseverance, dedication, determination — or other noble gestures. The awardees will be celebrated in conjunction with the McKnight’s Women of Distinction program.

Nominations in this category may be submitted at no charge. That’s right, for free.

By the way, nominations are also open for the larger event. Categories will include Rising Stars, Veteran VIPs and the Hall of Honor. Please note, however, that there is a $129 entry fee for nominations in those other categories. But don’t delay. The final day to enter is Wednesday, Jan. 12, which is less than a week away. Click here for more details.

Life can get awfully busy as we struggle to make a living. Please take a moment to recognize someone who is truly making a difference. That person will be happy you did. So will you.

John O’Connor is editorial director of McKnight’s Senior Living and its sister media brands, McKnight’s Long-Term Care News, which focuses on skilled nursing, and McKnight’s Home Care.