Most of us are not mindful of how our actions, words and thoughts go out into the world far beyond ourselves. More than you can ever imagine, you impact more than just your immediate “circle” around you.
Imagine this: You are driving down the road and some A-hole cuts you off. Even worse, he doesn’t say he’s sorry or even give you “the wave” that silently says, “I messed up, I am sorry!” You immediately feel wronged…mad…upset and angry. You find your mood changes for the worst. Maybe you carry that anger with you to the store that you were going to. Instead of being nice and kind to the cashier, you are rude and short…still steaming from the audacity that guy had cutting you off. How dare he drive like a jerk like that? Who does he think he is? Ripple…
The cashier that you were just short and rude to was having a sad day already. Her husband had just told her that he wanted a divorce. Now she has to deal with some rude guy buying groceries from her. Ripple…
It was the last straw for her and all that she could handle. She snaps at the next client that comes through her line. He is outraged. He goes home and on the way, road rages when someone tried to get into his line in front of him. His actions, in turn, make another person mad who takes his anger out on others. The ripples you started keep spreading.
You started something that you don’t even know. Hundreds of ripples get started and they continue to spread all over the place.
When you get home, you tell EVERYONE in your house about the guy that cut you off this morning. Your voice is elevated. Your emotions are high and your face scowls when you tell the story. Can you believe that guy? How could he do that to me? You are so agitated because this happened or that happened. Blah blah blah.
Good for you, you let someone basically ruin your day and now you are taking part in making everyone else’s day miserable. Your home, which was just filled with peace a few short minutes ago, now is filled with agitation. Happy now?
So here’s the deal: Maybe next time something like that happens, instead of thinking about yourself and how mad someone like that made YOU, change your mindset. React with love. What if, instead, when that happened, you responded with the thought, “I hope that guy is OK. I hope that he doesn’t have some sort of emergency that he has to get to quickly.”
You stopped the negative ripple and the hostile chain of events that could have happened. They could have been never-ending. You don’t know.
The truth is, we don’t know what is going on in someone else’s life. Everyone has their struggles. We don’t know the suffering or the bad news someone might have heard that day. We don’t know the sorrow in the minds of others or the hurt that they might be feeling.
When we choose to assume the best in people, a lot of things will change for you. Repeat after me: It is not all about me. It is not all about me.
Maybe the guy who cut you off just got a phone call from his father telling him his mother died. The reason he is driving so erratically is because he is so distraught and he is rushing home to be there with his father.
He could also just be a jerk.
You don’t know. The question is not whether or not he is a jerk. The question is Which response will bring YOU more peace?
Yeah, I thought so.
In whatever storm you are going through, you can still consciously choose what kind of person you want to be and how you react. You can stop the negative ripples with Love Ripples…cause those are way more powerful. Imagine if we flooded THOSE ripples into the world.
Make some new ripples! Spread gratitude, love, kindness, laughter, positivity, random acts of kindness, a listening ear, an understanding heart, peace and inspirational thoughts wherever you go.
No one will be perfect at this. Just be mindful of everything that you put out there and you will develop a greater sensitivity towards it. When you are putting a bad ripple out there, you will quickly recognize it and put a stop to it. You will turn around and put a GOOD ripple out into the world.
Your reactions are powerful, my dear friends. Their energy they have has the capability to change the world.
One action, thought, and reaction at a time.
Thank you so much for reading today. I hope that I made you smile and think a little bit. Be sure to check out my Podcast on iTunes, Soundcloud and Stitcher —- Jen’s 10 G’s