Tag Archives: Polite

Birds of a Feather

14 Jul

We associate with all kinds of people throughout our lives. Some are family, some are friends, some are lovers, some are acquaintances, and some may even be enemies. Except for family situations or times when we must associate with someone because of a job or other activity, we may choose with whom we spend our time. It’s wise to think about the behaviors and choices of those we share our lives with. We all influence the world in many ways and personal influence can be very powerful. If we frequently associate with someone whose choices are negative, they may, over time, become a detrimental influence in our lives. There is an old saying, “Birds of a feather flock together.” It obviously means people who share the same types of preferences and choices tend to spend time together. It’s fun to share our time with others who enjoy our company and like the same things we do. But if we are in relationships with someone who is making bad choices, or whose behavior is destructive and hurtful, and we spend a lot of time with them, we may get hurt. We are in control of our lives but repeated exposure to negative behavior over time may affect us. We deserve to be happy and live with the least amount of complication. We can associate with whomever we choose, but it’s wise to be careful about their influence over us.

Relationships are important and we all want strong, healthy, and happy ones. If we have someone in our lives who belittles us, ridicules us or makes us feel small or unworthy, their comments and actions may have a negative impact on us. If we’ve been in the relationship for a long time it may be hard to find a way out. But we are important and we deserve to be treated well. If we’re struggling with a family member we value but who treats us this way, we can limit our time with them. We don’t have to sever all our ties but we can lessen our exposure. We don’t have to do anything that is uncomfortable for us and we can take care of ourselves and minimize offensive interactions. We can determine how much time negative influences may have in our lives, and we can limit it so we’re comfortable and do what’s best for us.

If we have friends who make decisions and choices we find difficult, we don’t have to participate. We never have to go along just because someone wants us to, and we always have the right to say no. We can be polite and gracious, but if we’re uncomfortable with any situation we can opt out. We don’t have to go anywhere we don’t want to go, or do anything we don’t want to do. Our lives are ours to design and direct. If we have friends who do things that make us uncomfortable, we can tell them how we feel and explain our boundaries. If they can accept our choices, we may continue the relationship. If they can’t accept them, we may do other things. We can change anything we need to ensure we’re happy with what we’re doing and where we’re going.

Today if you’re in a situation that is making you uncomfortable, if someone near you is including you in a decision that doesn’t feel right or is criticizing you and making you feel bad, you may step away. You deserve the life that makes you happiest. You know what feels right. Determine what works for you and follow that. You deserve every blessing. Today let yourself have them.

Sharing It

3 May

When we are young, most of us are taught to share. We’re encouraged to share our crayons and our toys, sometimes our food or treats, and in doing so we learn how to give. As we get older sometimes we lose focus of the blessings that come from sharing. We’re busy taking care of ourselves and making sure our needs are met. We manage our time and our possessions and may hold them tightly in order to control them. Although it’s important to control our lives effectively, we can still include others in them as well. There is a lot of need in the world. Some of it’s financial and we may certainly give to a limitless number of programs or projects, but some of the need is personal. Not all needs are material in nature. We all need compassion, kindness and consideration. And our capacity to share those things is virtually endless. Unlike our checkbooks, there is no limit to what we can share emotionally. If we’re having a good day we can boost those around us. We can choose to be kind and engaged instead of rude and aloof. We can be polite and helpful and when we are, we share our very best.

The world is a big, complicated place with all kinds of problems and issues. Because we have so much access to what’s going on everywhere we can see suffering and trouble every moment of every day. Unfortunately, those who produce our news stories focus on all the negative things that are happening all the time. And there is no end to trouble. But with all that duress and strife, there are people doing well. There are people helping each other, caring for one another, easing each others’ burdens, and sharing what they can to make things better. We rarely hear about those stories but the people sharing their lives in service to others are the ones really changing the world. Sometime it’s not the big events that make the lasting changes. Sometimes it’s the small gift of personal charity that turns everything around.

We don’t have to do huge, impressive acts of kindness to make a change in the world. The smallest thing – helping someone who’s fallen get back up – can turn things around for others. We can be kind and share goodness with those around us and make a big impact on the world. Of course we can share our money and our food and our possessions and those are all helpful. But when we share ourselves by being kind and considerate, when we reach higher to be more present and available to others, and when we do a little more to serve those around us, the world becomes a better place. Lives are lifted and we impact everything for good. We have an unlimited ability to be loving and caring. If we focus on sharing those attributes with others, everything will be better. Our lives will be more fulfilled and those around us will feel happier. We have so much to offer. If we remember to share it, we can change the world.

Today remember to offer your kindness to those around you. Be polite and caring in all your dealings and your impact on the world will be great. You have nobility inside you. Show it to others. Be the change we all want to experience. You have so much to offer. Share it with those around you today. And you will change the world.

Magic Words

28 Oct

As times change, societies evolve in different ways and people change the way they receive information and react to others.  Throughout the course of history different accepted models for behavior have changed as well, and our ideas about manners and the rules of engagement have shifted along with them.  During the Victorian Era, the rules for behavior were very formal and the level of etiquette for everyone was quite high.  Our society has changed dramatically since those times, but manners are still important and there is nothing more impressive than appropriate, polite interaction.  Just remembering to say “thank you” when someone does something for us is a way to show our appreciation and acceptance.  But sometimes in the busy lives we lead, and all the distractions we face, we may neglect to speak up and instead just push forward.  There really is no substitute for showing our appreciation and taking time to be polite and considerate in our dealings.  It generally makes our interactions more positive and can smooth over any rough edges.

Many people don’t seem to value politeness in this day and age.  There is a great focus on getting things done, moving fast, and doing what is important to us.  Sadly, there is no shortage of selfishness or callousness.  But a competitive spirit and the desire to accomplish much should never keep us from being kind and considerate to those around us.  Just saying “thank you” when someone hands us something and “you’re welcome” when we are thanked goes a long way in showing people we care.  Caring for one another let’s others know we are aware of them.  If we extend ourselves just a little by being polite and sharing ourselves as we go through our days, we can be a positive influence, and the world always needs more of that.

If we choose to, we can get what we want, and do everything we need to without considering anyone else but ourselves.  We can make our plans alone, and keep our eyes down as we walk along.  We don’t have to engage others if we don’t want to, and may remain silent when someone opens a door for us, or look the other way when someone says hello. We can keep to ourselves and be as isolated as we like.  But that will never bring us the joy and growth that being open to those around us can bring.  If we take a moment to say “thank you” when someone does something small for us, it opens a door, and we’ll feel more connected and closer to them as we pass.  Being polite and gracious means being there, in the moment, and acknowledging others.  It’s said that “please” and “thank you” are magic words, and they are.  When we say them, they open doors every time.

Today if you’ve been keeping a low profile, preferring to remain silent and isolated, think about looking up and engaging those around you.  Say “please,” “thank you” and “you’re welcome”.  You are a great influence and everyone wants to know you.  Be gracious, be polite, and let your actions welcome them in.

Returning Kindness

22 Aug

Recently while driving around completing some errands, I came upon a car stopped at a green light. I could see a white haired woman at the wheel, and I waited a moment before I tapped my horn to prompt her to drive forward. I was stunned when she looked at me in the rear view mirror and furiously lifted her middle finger at me flipping me off. It was so rude, and so unexpected. While she was still looking at me, I smiled and waved. She then hit the gas and took off. I’m pretty sure she was angry at me for blowing my horn – as evidenced by her indelicate response – but I have wondered how she felt after seeing me return her insult with a smile.

People do lots of things, and sometimes they don’t make the best choices. The woman in the car didn’t need to be rude to me for tapping my horn, but that was her choice. I could have returned an insult right back to her. I could have flipped her off, or just laid on my horn to annoy her. If I had done that, all I would have accomplished was to prove I could be as rude as she was. And I didn’t want to do that. I wanted to do something better, so I returned kindness for her behavior. I have wondered what she thought of that. Did she regret her actions after seeing my smile and wave, or did she just get more angry? I will never know. What I do know is that I chose what was best for me.

Choosing what is best isn’t always easy. It’s hard to be kind to someone who is being cruel. It’s hard to return consideration when someone is being mean, and it’s hard to be polite when someone is being rude. But we make our own choices, and determine our own paths. It’s easy to give back bad behavior when we get it. It doesn’t take much energy to send the negative and nasty right back over the net, but what does that bring us? If we want to be the best we can be, we need to set our sights higher. Anyone can be rude, hateful, and mean. That’s easy. Setting the goal to return kindness in the face of those things is hard, but it defines who we are. We set our own standards, and we can decide what we’ll do. If we set them according to what’s best for us instead of where someone else has put them, we can become the people we want to be. The choice is ours.

Today if someone is rude to you, if someone is mean to you, or if someone hurts you, before you respond think about choosing kindness. Return the behavior that most defines who you are. Reach higher, and choose what is best for you. You will never regret a good decision. Today, fill your day with them and you’ll be closer to the person you really want to be.