Many moons ago when my children were very young (2,3 & 5) someone gave me the biggest gift ever. A compliment.
We were at a sit down restaurant and my children enjoyed their meals. I enjoyed mine as well. It was a very normal event for us. I tried t take them out once a month if possible just to get a bit of a break from cooking and to give them a chance to learn how to behave in that setting. Nothing huge there.
As a group of adults who all looked like they had been there for a business lunch were leaving, they stopped at our table and told my children and I how wonderfully behaved they were. One gentleman looked at me and said, “You should be very proud. You are raising really good children. It was a pleasure to sit by you”. I’ll never forget it. Those people taking 30 seconds out of their day to stop and pay us a compliment meant the world to us all. I was so proud and happy plus my eldest 2 were beaming with pride.
After this experience I decided that I would try to offer the same sort of encouragement when given the chance. I don’t limit myself to just children but I will admit that I really try hard to give parents a huge thumbs up when it is deserved. The mother that says no in a store and means it. The father that does not cave in to the tantrum of a child wanting a toy. A parent that speaks with obvious respect to their children and get the same right back. I just love seeing those things and I love to watch the pleasure that crosses the face of the parents who are obviously trying their best and really appreciate someone noticing that rather than rolling their eyes at the misbehaving child.
I often wish that I could change the world for the better and I used to think that was a gargantuan and impossible task. Then I stumbled across a saying by Gandhi that says “Be the change that you want to see in the world”.
That is very doable isn’t it?
If you want world peace? Be truly peaceful towards others.
If you wish that more people would read? Start reading. Better still? Volunteer for a literacy project or help someone you know learn to read.
I hear people who live near me complain that no one visits each other any longer but when I ask if THEY go out and visit people? Well, you know the answer right?
If you want it to happen in your lifetime? You must do it. Even if at first you are the only one.
Making these small but significant changes in your life will make you a happier and more forward moving person but you will also help others do the same.
I know that many people who read this blog have been torn down by others. Some have even been shredded to bits. Even if you have had a healthy past, you know what it is like to be the victim of other peoples hatred even if it was a bully on the playground 30 years ago. I doubt anyone gets through life completely unscathed.
So you know how it feels. You know how much it hurts. Those are sad facts but the compassion that you can feel towards others whom are hurting is a beautiful byproduct of this as well.
You can take this and make the world a better place.
Build up others because you know what it feels like to be torn down.