Doing things for others isn’t just a selfless act. It is a selfish act also.
I’m not referring to the you scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours mentality. When we do things for others out of the goodness of our hearts, we receive gifts back in the form of good karma that we get to add to our buckets. This good karma comes back to us in a multitude of ways. Perhaps it is that unexpected settlement cheque that comes in the mail after a minor accident, or the person in the drive thru ahead of you who decided to pay it forward and covered the cost of your pick-me-up mid-afternoon latte.
Beyond that, we also also experience that whole neuroscience of giving part of ourselves to others. When we help others, we also help ourselves. We experience an increase in endorphins, the feel-good chemicals in our brains. Yes, science actually backs up being a good person. When we have a surge of endorphins, our bodies actually feel healthier. So there is the selfish part of it. When we help others, we are helping ourselves too.
The best part is, that helping others is contagious. Going back to the pay it forward idea in the drive thru, where I live, this has become a bit of a thing that goes on from time to time. Maybe it is the Canadian kindness mentality, maybe not. But, when this begins, it can often continue on for a dozen people or even more. This positive energy leads to more positive actions which means more goodness in our world.
So, keep adding karma to your kindness bucket. Let it grow and overflow. Because it’s good for the world around you, and it is very good for you too.
I have been reminded lately of the importance of human interaction. In this, I mean how important it is to have contact with others. Physical contact, verbal communication, or whatever it is that satisfies that personal need. We all need to be valued in some way. To be appreciated. To be wanted.
To be loved.
Remember those who play a role in your life, no matter how small. Thank the person holding the door open for you as you enter the mall to buy those last minute gifts. Smile at the lonely woman sitting and looking out her window as you walk to collect your children from school. Give a compliment to a stranger for no other reason but to spread a little joy to the life of another.
In this world of smart phone abuse, I watch as people walk down the street and hallways with their faces buried in screens. People no longer notice those around them. I feel the isolation of technology affecting society, and I urge everyone to be part of the resistance here. Let’s not forget our humanity and our human interaction.
What would you do if you saw an animal get hit on the road, and the driver continued on without stopping? Do you stop and help the animal or do you carry on with your day with little thought about the life that was just changed or perhaps ended? Do you believe that one life is worth more than another? That human life means more than animal life?
They say that you can tell a lot about an individual based on how he treats something/someone who cannot do anything for him in return. I personally believe there is a lot of truth in that. Those who can threaten a life, who can kill or hurt another being is not the type of person I welcome into my life. These are they types of people that I have had to remove from my life simply for my own self preservation. In doing so, I have found that there are compassionate individuals out there. I find that in being around those people, it is soothing to my soul. Those who stop to help the injured animals on the side of the road and help with their rehabilitation, those people are angels on earth. Those who help the homeless by providing food, clothing, shelter and a listening ear, those people are making this world a better place to be.
So why are there so many people in the world who hurt others? Why is there domestic violence? Why do husbands hurt their wives? Why can’t we cohabitate regardless of race, creed, gender? Why must we always be at war with humankind? Why do animal abusers do what they do?
There are a lot of quesions that I can’t answer. There are so many things that happen in this world that hurt others. These are the things that need to change. If you cannot treat those who cannot do anything for you in return with kindness and compassion, respect and love, then it begs the question, why are you here?
I believe that every life has purpose. Every being has a reason for its existence. I want my existence to have a positive impact on the world. I do not want my presence on earth to be questioned, and therefore, I have great pride in being one of those individuals who is kind to those who cannot do anything for me in return.