“Humility is not thinking less of yourself, it’s thinking of yourself less.” C.S. Lewis
I recently saw the documentary on Mr. Rogers, “Won’t You Be My Neighbor”. I refuse to believe the force of innate goodness that he represented is a thing of the past. There is still a lot of good going on; we just might need to search a bit longer and harder these days. One has to admit that Mr. Rogers’ epitomized everything good: respect and dignity for all people, tolerance, he was an ordained Presbyterian minister, a vegetarian, exercised daily, champion of children and my favorite thing of all was that the sweaters he wore on his TV show were hand knit by his mother. How cool is that? He even chose to wear sneakers on the set because they were quieter – who considers this?
It made me think about individuals in my life who are genuine (the real deal) and those that do things for ulterior motives. It can summed up by those with heart vs. those with no heart. None of us are perfect nor do we want to be, but once you see a Gestalt pattern developing in your behavior and most importantly in those you choose to surround yourself with it is then you can understand the total picture and act accordingly.
It, however, is not black and white or as simple a discovery that you think it should be. So many people are just not genuine in today’s more complex world and more often than not do things to make themselves look good or to ingratiate others to them rather than by really being kind or genuine in their motivation. They need an audience and often the front they present is very impressive. They have NO heart but want others to think they do; this is extremely important for this type of personality. Proceed cautiously.
It’s a choice; always a choice.
The examples are endless, but here are a few that ‘may’ seem obvious, but may get you thinking as to the real motivation behind the action (it will bust the thin veneer every time):
- The parent that cheers a bit too loudly at their child’s graduation
- The friend that says they will be there for you & have your back, but is always MIA
- Unfilled promises by others and their not understanding or appreciating the meaning of commitment
- Is the person you are talking to really listening to you?
- The individual that over pays and over tips or is always picking up the tab
- Someone who is giving gifts or sending greeting cards to excess yet with no thought
- The colleague that donates to charities to have their name in lights not anonymously and then proceeds to brag about it
- One who is designer label driven
- Or a new favourite of mine is the seemingly ‘nice’ individual who is so wrapped up in their politics that they are just downright mean, rude and inconsiderate of everyone
Though we cannot always be the personification of good, remember as you choose the course and navigate the pathways of your life that there is one certainty: a fake is always uncovered! It’s often not a pretty ending. It is just the way it is….. Always!
ETA: RIP Kelly Blair – a man with a truly kind heart! 8.30.18