So last week I was trying to make a right hand turn out of the lane that my office is on, during peak hour, across a really busy Sydney road. It is always the least favourite part of my day, simply because it reminds me of how many assholes are on the loose. On this particular day I was lucky to only encounter two of them, although the volume of assholes does not diminish the impact on my soul. One male and one female took it upon themselves to deliberately place their cars across the little gap that others were leaving for me to make my getaway. I say deliberate because they both looked at me and shook their heads to announce their deliberate asshole-ness.
Besides the shift in my mood to slight anger, there was also my usual pity. I have come to realise that most assholes are living really awful lives, and this is why they go about making as much misery in the world as possible, it somehow makes them feel better about themselves. It is hard not to act on the anger that this type of person stirs in you, I know. Over time I have come to feel the anger and the pity in equal measure.
It is actually not possible for you to influence the amount of assholes or their actions, the only person we can ever really change is ourselves. The best way to reduce the impact of them is to put more of the good stuff back out into the universe, so that this outweighs the yucky stuff.
Here are some of the easiest ways to be more kind and less asshole:
♡ If you see someone struggling in the traffic, take my example above and be as far from this type of person as possible. Nobody has a more important ‘need’ to get through the traffic than anyone else, unless you’re an Ambulance.
♡ It is not always the strangers who behave in awful ways, it can be the people closest to you. Be a nice daughter, parent, sister, friend, colleague, aunty, uncle, cousin. Family is important, and as dark as it may sound, your time with them is limited, precious and really needs to be embraced and treasured. Be more kind to your loved ones.
♡ Smile at some of the other school/daycare parents. I am only just into my second year of big school parenting and already I have seen the little melting pot of the world that exists inside the school gates. It is far from the place of harmony and love I had hoped to find, although of course there are many lovely parents. It can be daunting, awkward and tough at times, more smiles would make a big difference.
♡ If you spend any time in an office with other adults, use this as your base for kindness. Clean the kitchen, offer cups of tea, grab lunch or a treat for someone, offer to get coffees. Spread kindness there and it will multiply.
♡ Speak up about things that matter, and for people who don’t have a voice. I believe that this shines a light on the assholes.
♡ Pay attention to your neighbours, if someone needs a little help be the one to offer it. I leave some of my magazines for my elderly neighbour at her doorstep each month, it is such a simple gesture.
♡ If you spend time in the digital world for work or blogging or connection, spend at least 30 minutes a day just leaving nice-ness in various places. Leave compliments on your friends photos, leave lovely comments on your favourite blogs, leave kind feedback for the businesses you appreciate. This type of kindness has far reaching effects!
♡ Please don’t speak on your mobile when you are in a shop or at a counter of any kind. I still see this all the time and it is just so rude, there is no excuse for this complete lack of respect.
♡ Give some things away. This is something I have truly embraced over the past little while, I have recently given away half of my wardrobe of clothes, many of my books and handbags. It can change the life of someone else who needs these things more than you, and it is just the most beautiful natural high!
Go forth and put more KINDNESS out there!