Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Let's Do This.

I'm tired of feeling like the world is full of terrible people doing terrible things.

There seems to be an endless supply of news stories about crime or mass shootings or war or other equally depressing happenings times infinity.

If I let myself think about about it too hard or too long, I kind of want to flee the planet. They don't have these problems in space probably. 

But then I see or hear or read something wonderful and my heart gets happy and I feel better about living among all the other humans. 

That happened yesterday. 

My husband was texting me from a cross-country flight because TECHNOLOGY IS AMAZING. He was bored and giving me a play-by-play of the on-board happenings. He was seated near two women, each traveling with young children. He's never bothered by sitting near kids because he has them, too. But that's not the case with every passenger and if you've ever traveled with young children, you know that airplanes can be a place where the assholiest of assholes band together to hate those of us who bring them with us on public transportation. 

One of the children was a little girl, around 7 years old. She and her mom had been seated in separate rows, and the little girl ended up sitting next to two men, her mom across the aisle. The in-flight movie was 'Monster's University' and the little girl didn't have any headphones. One of the men sitting next her was listening to his iPod, noticed she couldn't hear the movie, and gave his up to the little girl.

BUT WAIT. 

At one point the flight got pretty turbulent. My husband said it wasn't just a little bumpy...the plane was actually rocking. The little girl puked. The seatbelt sign was on, so her Mom couldn't get up to help her. The men - strangers, might I remind you - THEY CLEANED UP THE LITTLE GIRL'S PUKE, YOU GUYS.

BUT WAIT.

The other mother seated nearby had been working tirelessly to console her crying baby. When the seatbelt sign went off allowing passengers to get up, another woman sitting near the mother (they didn't know each other) asked if she could help with the baby. She then proceeded to rock and dance in the aisle with her until she went to sleep.

As I was reading these texts, I'm ashamed to admit that I kind of found myself in shock and awe. Not because I don't think people are capable of doing nice things, but because so rarely are they the ones that make headlines. The world's negativity has jaded me.

We are so quick to point out when people do things wrong. I know I'm guilty. But, I've come to a turning point over the past couple of months. I can't pinpoint the catalyst, but something has happened that's made me aware that I'm not doing my part to make this world a better place. Simply existing as a non-criminal member of society is just not doing it for me. I feel like I am capable of so much more. 

Let's start small, shall we?

Before he signed off as the plane was about to land he said, "These are good people. If I had some 'Good Human' coupons, I'd give them to some of the people on this plane."

I laughed for a second and then I was like...WHOA. That is a genius idea (although I really have to be careful about telling him things like that - you know, because of the head-swelling and all). 

Have you seen those "You suck at parking" cards? They're really a thing. You can actually buy them. There are lots of options, but this one was the least rude I could find. Really.




I'll admit to thinking these are funny. Because, really? Is it that difficult?

Deep breath...I digress... (P.S. I don't have any of those cards.)

Most people -ahem - wouldn't think twice about sticking one of those babies under a deserving someone's wiper. Amirite?

So why don't we commend people for doing nice things when we see them happen? I think that sucks of us. Wait. I shouldn't assume you're guilty. It sucks of ME. Boooooo, ME! Big fat thumbs down for ME. The good news is...it's never too late to pick up a good habit. It might feel awkward at first, but I'm going to fight through it. I AM GOING TO FIGHT THROUGH IT. You will never regret making someone feel like they matter. I believe this.

Here is my proposal. Remember the "Good Human" coupons my husband mentioned? Well, I googled it and can you believe I came up short? Nothing. Nada. Maybe I didn't look hard enough, but the only ones I did find were sarcastic. Shocking. So, I made some. I'm going to carry them with me. I'm going to give them to my kids to carry around, too. And we are going to hand them out.



 I hope the outcome will be 3-fold.
1. A "Good Human", as my husband coined them, will be recognized for doing a good thing.
2. The "Good Human", in turn, will be encouraged to do more good things.
3. When carrying these cards, we will constantly be on the lookout for other "Good Humans" which will inadvertently turn our focus away from the negative. Yay!

I invite you to join me. Feel free to print your own sheet of cards here

I know I can't change the world, but I can change my view of the world. And maybe - just maybe - I can change yours, too?

**I don't ask this often, but if you can get on board with this, or have friends that might, please share it. There is no monetary benefit to me (it could actually end up costing me money) - all I'll get is that feel good feeling of making a difference. **



24 comments:

  1. I *love* this idea! :) I definitely agree... there is *so* much focus on the negativity in this world that we often miss out on the 'good human' acts. I'm definitely on board and will share with friends who, hopefully, will hop on board as well! :)

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  2. There are some teachers at my sons school that hand certificates out to kids who are found helping others. I think it's a great idea. :-)

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  3. This is absolutely wonderful! :) I've been feeling much the same about humanity and have hoped for some redeeming acts to restore my faith. Thanks for the idea! I think we will.

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  4. This is absolutely wonderful! :) I've been feeling much the same about humanity and have hoped for some redeeming acts to restore my faith. Thanks for the idea! I think we will.

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  5. This is absolutely wonderful! :) I've been feeling much the same about humanity and have hoped for some redeeming acts to restore my faith. Thanks for the idea! I think we will.

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  6. This is absolutely wonderful! :) I've been feeling much the same about humanity and have hoped for some redeeming acts to restore my faith. Thanks for the idea! I think we will.

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  7. This is right in line with the "See Beautiful" movement. Are you familiar with it? You can google it.

    Your Pals,

    Murphy & Stanley

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  8. Brilliant idea! I've sent you a message via FB.

    -Dr. Liz, and not Fiona the dog (who does practice her own random acts of kindness involving tail-wagging and kisses)

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  9. I'm in 100% I, too, feel like all I do is exist sometimes, rather than actually make a difference for good and try and stifle my vomit from all the bad in the world. I will PM you deets and promote this!! What a great idea!

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  10. I have been keeping a mental list of "Awesome Human Moments" that I have the privilege of witnessing. This helps me take that one step further :)

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  11. Great post. I always try and tell people when they do a good job. I figure they hear enough crappy comments to last a lifetime. Technology is great.

    If you know anyone that would like to donate gifts or cash, I'm doing a promotional post where 100% of proceeds go to my local food bank. I do it every year in honour of my son. http://www.journeysofthezoo.com/2013/10/donate-charity-gifts.html

    P.S. I'd love some cards!

    Besos, Sarah
    Blogger at Journeys of The Zoo

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  12. This is a fantastic idea!!! A couple of years ago I noticed that every day when I asked my daughter how her day was she would always tell me about the negative things and it kept getting worse. So I instituted a game that each night at dinner you had to say one positive thing, then it became a competition between my son and daughter and now whoever starts they name as many things as possible and the other person has to match that amount or list more. It has really made a difference and they look for the positive things in life more. This idea is great and will be shared at dinner tonight! Thanks!!!

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  13. What a great idea =) I was just thinking today how depressing the news is and we need to focus on the good. The bad things will always be there but we don't need to dwell on them. Instead we need to highlight and focus on the positive. Thanks for taking action!

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  14. Love the idea! Too often people do the right thing and never get acknowledged for it. We sure aren't going to cover everybody, but we'll get to some of them. That's way better than letting it slide.

    Of course, I see a few "you park like Helen Keller (Stevie Wonder, Ray Charles)" tickets being passed out too. It's a pet peeve.

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  15. I'm so in. I travel across the country with my kids twice a year, and I see these people you described. I've flown with them, and they have moved me to tears. Good people are everywhere, quietly spreading smiles and love. Awesome idea!

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  16. I love this. It's such a beautiful idea. I may even have my kids hand them out.

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  17. Friggin awesome. Simply perfection.

    I don't see much good anymore either. I told my husband just the other day how I had to turn the news off (when I was away for work) because I couldn't take another story of a beaten baby or a shooting in the street or an old lady roughed up.

    You have a brilliant thing here. I'm gonna do my own cards...you're friggin supreme.

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  18. Haha, I love this! It helps the world more to encourage the good behaviors than bitch about the bad ones!

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  19. I love this. I always try to encourage my daughters (and remind myself) to spread random acts of kindness, this goes right along with - really it even improves on it. I'll be printing some cards and sharing this post.

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  20. I woke today OUT OF PROPANE. NO HEAT. Propane Dood put me on the list but said it wouldn't be here until tomorrow. After closing he came out on his own time to bring me propane so the furbabies & I won't freeze - he gets the first from me!

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  21. What a wonderful story of humanity! Thank you for sharing it with us today.

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  22. Thanks M! Received my positive cards today. Can't wait to share positive comments.

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  23. I love this, because I LOVE nice people. I really do. They make me SO happy.

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  24. I have some that Ashley gave me and I used one once at Costco. The lady, a Costco employee picking up baskets int he parking lot, all but cried when I gave it to her. Made my day.

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