I’m living in This Messed Up World. What Do I Do????

Does it seem like the “craziness” has come out in everyone around you?  From the man at the gas station to the woman in line at the grocery store to your doctor, everyone seems to have a little more “crazy” coming out of him or her than usual.  We can blame social media or the entertainment industry; however, is the reason this world is “messed up” a result of technology or the lack of self-control.  It seems that we have taken the concepts of “YOLO” (you only live once) and “free to be you and me” to the extreme to cover any behavior whether good or bad.  As a society, have we lost our ability to practice self-control?


As human beings, I believe that we are basically good; however, we allow our circumstances and situations to control us rather than practicing self-control.  For example, I left my house this morning headed to the office and I found that the other drivers were annoying me simply because I was in a hurry and they were in my way.  Rather than accepting the fact that others needed to get to work or to wherever they were headed, I allowed myself to become frustrated and agitated by the situation.


Later in the day, I realized that I had given up control of my emotions and caused myself, and anyone who dared to cross my path for the next few hours, unnecessary anguish.  It is not as if I never do good deeds; however, I am just like every other human, I am naturally inclined toward being self-centered.  We can usually resist that inclination but in this crazy world of immediate gratification and self-absorption (Does the world really need to know your every action through Facebook and Twitter?), can we overcome a natural inclination to be self-centered?


Yes, we can.  We can strive to do unto others, as we want them to do unto us.  We can practice the Golden Rule every day even when the circumstances and situations push us to lose our self-control.  Adopt these five principals and make them a part of your everyday life to show the world that no matter how crazy it is, you refuse to join in the madness.


1. Smile more.  Smiling is contagious.  Smile at the people in the cars around you when traffic is at a standstill, smile at the rude checkout person and smile at the angry customer in line behind you.


2. Give a compliment.  Tell someone they look nice today, you like their shoes or their hair.  Give a sincere compliment to someone each day.


3. Say please and thank you.  This goes beyond being polite.  Say these phrases with sincerity so that each person you encounter knows how much you appreciate their assistance today.


4. Hold the door open for someone or give up your seat on the bus.  Simple gestures bring great joy to the recipient and may encourage him or her to pass it on.


5. Speak to a stranger.  The next time you are in an elevator, standing in line or waiting for your number to be called, strike up a conversation with someone.  Smile and ask if they are having a good day.  Most of us enjoy conversations while we are waiting but we are too timid to take the first step.


All it takes is just one person, one small gesture of kindness or one action that is rooted in positive thinking to change the moment from negative to positive.  You may not change this crazy world but you can change your little part of it.


Image credit:  Capture Queen