I had a vivid dream last night. One where I was a juror and had to decide who was guilty between two people. Both looked exactly alike. But, locked in a room with the othe jurors and access to the two under trial we could begin to see who wasn’t the good person there. I then began to make a judgment based on that person’s actions at the time, regardless of whether they committed the crime, it was their current behavior that made me assign guilt.
I bring this up, because last night before going to bed, I received an email that was a bit “snappy” from someone. I broke my rule about not checking email before bed, which I keep for that exact reason (reading something that bothers me). Then this morning I got to thinking about that email and this dream, and it made me start to consider what being a good person is all about.
So, here’s my recipe for being a good (and perhaps even remarkable) person, including being a good mother, daughter, sister, brother, father, son, co-worker, employee, business person, partner, spouse, and so on.
- Speak with compassion, even when you are scared, hurt, angry or fearful.
- Offer love to the seemingly unlovable.
- Refrain from judgment, and accepts others for who they are.
- Realizes when they’ve made a mistake, admits to it and can say they are sorry.
- Is mindful of other people.
- Doesn’t expect others to do what they want, simply because they want them to.
- Is willing to give back.
- Speaks words of encouragement.
- Practices forgiveness.
I think inherently, we all have a desire to be a good person. When we act in ways that are incongruent with that desire, we feel discomfort from our actions. Sometimes causing a spiral effect, leading to more incongruent words and actions. Being a good person doesn’t take a lot of energy or effort, but it does take patience, mindfulness and awareness about our thoughts and actions.
Remember, every thought you think, action you take, words you speak, affect the people around you. The more we use the recipe above in all our interactions with others, the more we can pass along kindness, hope and love to others, who can then pass it back or on to someone else.
It’s who are (your being), not what you do that makes you a remarkable person. We all have the ability to be remarkable human beings.
What else would you include in this recipe for being a good person? I’d love to know.