Monday, August 11, 2014

Being Nice; It's Not Just For Kids

 I know sometimes my writing gets serious and heavy, and I don't always want it to be like that. I had a blog post planned out for tonight, and it was going to be a rather positive and comical one, I still plan to write that soon. But right now there's something I want to say. I want you to know that this post is not brought on by one particular event, it is a culmination of thoughts that have stayed buried in the back of my mind, and now feels like the right moment for me personally to express them, so here I go.
     When I was in elementary school, we had guidance. Our guidance counselor would come into our classroom every week and teach us lessons about good qualities we should strive to have, like kindness, honesty and perseverance. I personally loved it, because while I wasn't always great at understanding all of the academic subjects, I really got this. It just made sense to me and I knew that I was good at being "good". When I got to middle school, guidance changed, it was no longer about the good qualities people should have, instead it was personality/learning style assessments and career planning. While I understand that those things are important and I believe they benefited me, I secretly missed having someone come in every week and remind my classmates and I to be nice people, because middle school is a very awkward time and sometimes that is dealt with in mean ways, and high school is about the same. Morals like kindness start to take a backseat to getting ahead and being successful, and pretty soon they are not even a factor anymore.
    I think sometimes by the time we are adults we completely forget to be nice, because we get busy with life and no one stops by each week to teach us about being a kind person and then give us a piece of candy if we listen quietly. Adults don't get rewarded with those cute "Caught being kind" stickers that are popular in elementary schools. Nice is not praised in the real world, not nearly as much as wealth and power and being right and having an opinion on everyone and everything. We tend to forget those lessons we learned when we were children, and we start to pick each other apart. We have opinions on what everyone else should do and how they should act, and I know that I am guilty of forgetting that God never asked for my help with the judgement process.I also have to remind myself frequently that even in a world where we are all connected by social media and can see parts of each others lives, we don't know the whole story. I never know exactly what someone might be going through, unless they personally tell me, and because of that I have no right to make judgments. It is not my job to judge, but to love, and I need to remember that.

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