Ok, so recently I was watching the local news. I used to do this all the time, sit down have dinner and watch the news. Due to changes in my schedule and the basic horrid-ness of the broadcast (or the way its reported), needless to say, I haven’t been watching the local news.
Alright, so one recent evening I was watch… there was an interview with one local police officer and he was discussing graffiti. His comment was that it needs to be erased immediately. He said one thing that has stuck with me… “Crime begets crime”. In other words, more people would be influenced to do graffiti if there already some there. To some degree I’ll agree with this officer, however, you would still require motive and means as well. Just because I see graffiti, doesn’t mean I’m going to unload a spray paint can from my back pocket and have at it !
Although the concept is something that is simple enough. This little phrase lead me to think that the idea can be applied, but applied differently. You can pretty much substitute almost any word/phrase for Crime, for example, you could put in there Irrational Behavior and take that into a busy mall before Christmas…. and guess what, you’d have a pile of people starting to behave irrationally. Now, try this… turn it around. Smile at someone in the grocery line. Allow someone to go before you at the coffee shop, or better yet, buy their coffee for them. See what happens. Yes, I’m sure you’ve heard of this, it’s called Random Acts of Kindness. It’s pretty simple, you do something nice for someone else, some complete stranger, and you do this for no other reason than to be kind to others.
I’ve heard from a very young age, “one good turn deserves another”. I admit, I don’t do this nearly as often as I’d like to or should, but I can tell you one thing. If you do this, you sure feel good about it. If you want to give this a try, and you’ve never done this before, then go to the website above and take a look at some of the ways you can do this. Read the stories too. They are real and heartwarming. Be a bitch/bastard/douche-bag and you will likely get that in return, be open, honest of genuine with people, and for the most part, you’ll get that back.
It’s not overly difficult to, to be nice to people that is. Often times it’s just a change in attitude… changing the way in which you approach a situation. So instead of “Crime begets Crime”, why not “Happiness begets Happiness”… seriously, give it a try, it works. Ever heard the phrase, “Smile and the whole world smiles with you” ? Of course you have. So, if you give off the vibe of being happy, you will find that people around you will pick up on that. You will find that many people will join in with you… Of course you are going to have your Nay-sayers. There are always going to be people that are negative and want you to come into their negative domain. The call is yours whether or not you want to follow them.
As an experiment, give it a try, while you are out running your errands. Try going out and being negative, and see what reaction you get from those around you. Later on, or the next day or whenever, try but go and do the same things, or similar things… go out with a happy stride in your step, smile at people, hold the door open, and joke with people. See what kind of reaction you get. I would guess its a very different reaction than when you were a negative Nellie.
For bonus points, give the Random Acts of Kindness a try… I think the thing you’ll find here is, that it makes you feel better knowing you did this. And in reality, that’s what it’s all about. It’s about having a good sense, a good feeling in the space between your ears.