Treat everyone with kindness and respect. Not because they are nice, but because you are.

Treat everyone with kindness and respect. Not because they are nice, but because you are. – Unknown

Are you willing to take the first step and be kind to someone else?

Are you willing to take the first step and be kind to someone else?

What does that mean?
If we waited until others were nice to us before we are nice to them, it might be a long wait. Especially if they are waiting for us to be nice to them first.

Think about that for a moment. How do you break the deadlock? If everyone is waiting for someone else to be kind before they are kind in return, that’s going to be a pretty messed up world, wouldn’t it?

But if you are already a nice person, why not let that part of you shine through? Be nice to others, treat them with kindness and respect first, and then see how they respond.

The alternative is a very long wait, right? Besides, if you don’t act as nice as you are inside, pretty soon, you won’t be as nice as you once were, and no one would ever know how nice you used to be.

Why is being nice important?
Imagine a world full of jerks. Everyone treats everyone else in a mean and disrespectful manner. Everyone behaves as if they were not nice people. Not just a few people, not just most people, everyone. And that would include you. What do you think of that kind of world? Would you like to live there?

I know I would not, and I imagine that you do not either. Being nice is that important, even if we don’t always remember. We all have rough days, and on occasion, we forget. We act hastily and in a less than great emotional state. In short, we act like jerks. Fortunately, it isn’t all the time. But most of us know someone who could improve, even if only a little.

And what if that person was you? How well do you manage to respond under stress? Do you always respond with kindness and respect, even to jerks? I know I don’t always do as well as I might want, but that is part of life, and we are only human. But part of being human is to strive to do better. Do you?

By working to improve our ability to resist our less pleasant side, we can work on being nice more often. By practicing kindness and showing respect, we can make these our default values, our default responses. Even when things are not going well. Especially when things are not going well, right?

Where can I apply this in my life?
Take a moment to think about the last few times you were cranky or otherwise feeling less than nice. How did you interact with others? Were you able to get even a little kindness or a token of respect out, or was it a bit worse than that? I know that when my attitude breaks down, it tends to go pretty fast.

But what does that mean for you? How well do you handle things? Not everyone responds to each and every kind of stress the same way. How do you deal with all the different stresses in your life? When the kids act up, do you yell at them, or can you calm yourself and show some kindness and respect?

When things go wrong at work, do you yell at your co-workers, make snide comments or otherwise act in an unkind or disrespectful manner? How did you handle things when your parents made you cranky? Did you smile and treat them with kindness and respect? I know I didn’t. How well did you handle it?

Take a moment and think about all the different times you lost it, and went to the far end of unkind or of disrespect. How do you feel today, thinking about these incidents? Do you consider some of them justified? Or do you regret most of them? All of them? Any of them? Consider that for a moment.

Can you consider yourself a nice person if you still harbor a grudge and consider unkind or disrespectful words or actions to be justified? Or do your actions and words speak for themselves? Are you only nice to people who you like, or who are like you? Do you divide people into those who are worthy and those who are not?

How would you react if everyone on the planet had that same attitude? Oh, wait. The vast majority seems to behave just that way. This group of people claims to be nice people, but are unkind and disrespectful of that group of people. But they are quick to remind you that they are nice to you.

I no longer want to live in that kind of world. Do you? That kind of attitude is not helpful in reducing the hatred and anger in the world. And the people who were treated in an unkind and disrespectful manner, they are going to remember, right? They will treat their tormentors the exact same way, or worse. That’s a downward spiral. Not good.

While none of us are perfect, there does exist some ‘nice’ in all of us. The only question is how strong is the ‘nice’ part of us? It can become stronger by practicing kindness. It can become stronger by treating others with respect. That is my pledge. I will work on being kind and showing respect.

Not because they deserve it. Not because they have earned it. But because that is who we are, and we hold ourselves to a high standard.

From: Twitter, @kimgarst
confirmed at :…
Photo by Wade M

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7 Responses to Treat everyone with kindness and respect. Not because they are nice, but because you are.

  1. Susan Amara 22 July 2015 at 11:21 pm #

    “If you are humble nothing will touch you, neither praise or disgrace, because you know what you are.”
    Mother Teresa

  2. Susan Amara 22 July 2015 at 11:18 pm #

    The Dalai Lama was asked “What was his Religion …?”he replied, “Kindness …”

  3. Susan Amara 22 July 2015 at 11:16 pm #

    Love and kindness do far more than punishment for the betterment of the human soul.

  4. Jamie 29 April 2015 at 12:30 pm #

    In a hurry we passed someone in our car and they followed us into a store and confronted us. We did not think we had done anything to cause offense to anyone but the person who followed us felt otherwise so taking his feelings into consideration we apologized. He seemed to be taken by surprise as though he had expected a fight. He went on to say he was having a hard day and maybe he took things the wrong way and apologized back and left.

    • philosiblog 29 April 2015 at 4:13 pm #

      Well done. Kindness is a very powerful tool, and many forget it is always in the toolbox. Thanks for sharing your story with us.

  5. g2-fcf8bf96d7e2365896b3bf22dd1302c3 9 April 2014 at 12:17 pm #

    Love this quote, very easily passed on to others without too much explanation needed:)

    • philosiblog 11 April 2014 at 4:50 am #

      Thanks for stopping by and for leaving such a nice comment. Glad the post meant something to you.

      I hope to hear from you again.

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