A single act of kindness throws out roots in all directions, and the roots spring up and make new trees.
Perhaps a cornerstone of this website and the theme of its writings is that one should always be a good person. Rarely is there a time to act otherwise. I believe that by being good people and doing good unto others, we can find fulfilment and, indeed, enlightenment – if you’re into that kind of thing. Let’s take a closer look at the second part: being good to other people and spreading positivity and happiness!
Even at a purely baseline and selfish level, being good to other people will make your life easier. People who like you are more likely to do you a favour, say kind things of you, and generally be more agreeable. If you act like you care about people, they will care about you. For the most part, kindness is always returned. Being truly kind, however, and spreading positivity and kindness to those around you is not possible in the long term if you are a selfish person.
Why is this? Because we are what we repeatedly do. Even if a selfish person sets out to be kind in order to gain leverage of some kind in order to make their life easier, over time being nice and good to people will become a habit. Suddenly – well, not that suddenly but over time – the selfish person will no longer be selfish but selfless.
Many people worry that that are too selfish. They might not describe themselves as selfish. Nor would others say thusly of them. But they feel like they could do more. More for those around them. A desire to become a better person. If this is you, then act as the selfish person does above – practice spreading positivity and happiness and it will become second nature to you.
Of course, there is nothing inheritably selfish about wanting a better life! One way to have a better life is to spread positivity and happiness to those around you and, literally, reap what you sow.
But why would you want to spread positivity and happiness in the first place?
The easiest answer to this is because we like it when people are nice to us. Knowing this, we want others to feel the same way. When we are nice to another we would think of how good they are feeling because of what we have said or done and that makes us, in turn, feel good! Not only do we get a buzz from being nice, but if they reciprocate, at that time or in the future, we get another feel-good buzz!
Not only that but by being kinder to others, you will become kinder to yourself. Not only will being kind to others boost your self-esteem as it is positively received but also you’ll find it less natural to be harsh to yourself. That doesn’t mean that you’ll no longer see a need to work on yourself and improve, but that you’ll begin to do so in a constructive and positive manner. You’ll want to lose weight to be healthier for yourself and others, not because you look fat and ugly. It’s a truly remarkable shift in perspective that comes – admittedly with time – from being a genuinely good and kind person.
Being a happy and positive person can, at times, be draining, particularly if you are not used to it. You’ll be fine once it is second nature to you but before you get to that point you should ensure you do not become burnt out. That doesn’t mean you should pick and choose who to be nice to, just that you should remember to take time for yourself and allow yourself to recharge. Read a good book or check out your favourite web pages to take a time out. Do so regularly. Looking after yourself means you can look after others.
One of the best ways to be positive is to stop with judgements. You don’t like being judged. Other people don’t like being judged. People really don’t like being judged. So don’t do it. You might have a small good feeling by passing judgement but it really won’t help you long-term. This also relates heavily back to my previous post about being deluded about our own capabilities. We believe we are better at things than other people even though we are not. Doing away with such thoughts makes it a lot easier to be an all-around good person!
An easy way to be kind to others is to put yourselves in their shoes. An old adage but still very relevant. Think about how complicated your life is. Everything that goes on in it. Everything you have to keep a track of. Now think of another person. They could have less going on that you, true. But they could have a lot more. Chances are you’ll never really know! But whilst the stresses they are under might be secret to you, there is no reason not to treat them kindly. You might be the only one that day to do so!
Dealing with difficult people can be its own challenge. You may find it much harder to be nice to them and spread the positivity and happiness you want to. You might be more inclined to dish out the pain! But resist such things. When dealing with difficult people you must first resolve the issue before moving on to spreading your positivity to them – although it is possible to be kind whilst dealing with the issue! In fact, being kind whilst dealing with difficult people is an excellent way to disarming them and making the whole situation easier for you to handle. I’ve just finished an excellent book on the subject and will be looking to write an article on what I’ve learnt soon.
Most importantly at all remember to listen to others. This is perhaps the number one way of being supportive and spreading positivity and happiness. Actively listen to what someone is telling you and they will be very grateful for it. They will feel good and so will you. It’s really that easy! Some people need to vent and some others need to say things they might be scared to say. Without criticism, listen to what they say and support their ideas. If necessary, provide constructive remarks.
Don’t forget that being mindful helps with spreading positivity and happiness no matter how you do it!
I’m interested to hear what you have to say on the topic of spreading positivity and happiness to others. Let me know what your most vivid experience of it is, either giving or receiving, in the comments below!