Sep 12, 2010

The Goodness

*There's nothing particularly funny about this post but I think it's an interesting topic and since it's been stuck in my thoughts all week, I feel I must discuss.  I promise you something more light-hearted next week that will make you laugh - I'll try my best to even make you pee a bit. But in the meantime, I give you this to think about...

What is your definition of a “good” person? I think we’d all use a lot of the same words to describe the good people in our lives: loyal, caring, kind, generous, etc. Now think about yourself; what qualities do you possess that make you good? You must think that in some ways you are a good person – I’m sure everyone does. We can always justify our actions somehow to convince ourselves that we made the “right” choice or did the “right” thing, that our motivations weren’t selfish and that we were thinking of others. But are we really just lying to ourselves?

Recently I’ve been thinking about whether or not I am really a good person – and I’m not sure if I am. I can say without a doubt that I’m a good mother and I try to be a good friend, wife, employee, etc. but am I a good person? I don’t know. I’m not presenting this question so that you can rush to reassure me that I am indeed good – this is not an attempt to fish for compliments because I’m not really sure if you’re a good person either.  Ha, didn't see that coming, did you?  Anyway, let me explain:

I’ve come to decide that it is our actions and what motivates these actions that measure a person’s “goodness”. I think the selfish, vain, petty people have the same potential for goodness that the caring, generous, loyal people do. Having said this, what have I really done that makes me “good”? What motivates my actions? How often will I do something just because it feels good, and right, and for no other reason?

If I really am a good person, shouldn’t I be out donating all my free time and money to charities and volunteer organizations? Shouldn’t I be focusing my efforts on making the world that we live in a better place and solving global issues? And shouldn’t I be doing all of this quietly, with no expectation or desire to be acknowledged or rewarded for my generosity and dedication? Isn’t that what the truly “good” people do?

I don’t know. What I do know is this – I can do more, I can do better and I think it’s time to start. I’m challenging myself, and you, to show how good of a person you are. Start small but make a start. We need time to ourselves, we need time with our friends and families and time to relax, but it only takes a little time to make a difference. Find that time and use it. Let your actions speak for you and find an answer to that tricky question – what makes me “good”? Ah... sounding a bit too much like an infomercial motivational speaker now.  I get carried away sometimes.  Regardless, I think you got my point or at least I hope so.

On a brighter note, I think we all have the potential to be good, and I think we all are good at times.  I'm sure we all love someone who we think is "good" and that person inspires us and helps to bring out our own "goodness".  I think we are all that "good" person in someone else's life too and without knowing it, we inspire others.  I also think that even if we do so unaware, we can still make our world a better place through our small everyday choices and actions.  Imagine how much you could do though if you tried, if you really tried, to be "good".


1 comment:

  1. Suzi,

    Evocative. I like where you were going with this. You made me think.