The Good You Do

Written February 13, 2017

“You, yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe deserve your love and affection.” ~Buddha

I thought we’d talk about something different today. It’s something many of us rarely do for many different reasons. Express love and appreciation for ourselves. Many of us do so much for others we rarely take a moment to appreciate what we do.  

Some people may think this is a selfish thing to do, and it is a little. If self appreciation is taken to far it can be overly selfish and we can become egotistical. But for those of us who are down on ourselves on a regular basis, we need to realize the good we do – no matter how small it may be. To do something like this and not go from beating ourselves up to being egotistical we need to understand the word humility. Humility is when we see ourselves as no better than and worse than anyone else.

In my internet travels I came across a great article from The Tiny Buddha site that can help you to appreciate yourself and the good you do. Take a moment or two before you go out today to appreciate some of the things you do that often go unrecognized and unnoticed. Think about how valuable your actions are not only for yourself but to others.

As the article reads, “All of our relationships depend upon our relationship with ourselves. If you don’t love yourself, you can’t possibly love someone else. If you don’t respect yourself, you likely won’t make respectable choices. If you don’t value your time, you probably won’t use your time in a way you might deem valuable. The way you treat yourself dictates how you’ll treat the world around you. So today I say we should all recognize all the good we each do each day. While rattling off physical things and conditions that we deem to be positive, we should take a moment to celebrate the person who also weathers the negative.”

Here are a few things to appreciate about yourself today:

The Good Things You Do for You

1. You let yourself learn new things, which helps you grow and contribute to the world.

2. You do good things for your body, like exercising and eating healthy foods (even if not always).

3. You honor your life by making healthcare a priority.

4. You take time away from work to simply be, which allows you to feel balanced.

5. You bounce back from bad days and disappointments.

6. You do what’s right for you, even if it’s not easy to say no to other people (and even if you occasionally people please).

7. You choose to be around people who make you feel good about yourself.

8. You work toward goals that make you feel passionate and purposeful.

9. You smile, which benefits both you and the people around you.

10. You give yourself the sleep you need to feel energized and balanced each day (even you sometimes need to get better sleep).

The Good Things You Do for Other People

1. You have good intentions.

2. You accept people for who they are and try to keep an open mind.

3. You make people laugh, whether you have a dry humor, an acerbic wit, or a caricature-like personality.

4. You listen to the people when they need an ear.

5. You’re compassionate toward other people.

6. You make selfless decisions to look out for the people you love, even if not always.

7. You forgive people when they make mistakes, even if sometimes it’s hard.

8. You vocalize it when you notice something you value, admire, or appreciate in someone else.

9. You help other people reach their potential.

10. You’re honest with people, even if sometimes vulnerability feels scary.

The Good Things You Do for the World

1. You care about your work, or something you do outside it, and you do it passionately.

2. You want to make a difference.

3. You vote to create positive change.

4. You recycle to preserve our natural resources.

5. You choose not to litter.

6. If you’re a parent, you’re shaping the next generation.

7. You give back, whether that means volunteering, donating old clothes, or simply helping a stranger in need.

8. You call for help when you see something potentially hazardous.

9. You teach something valuable to someone every day, whether you realize it or not.

10. You make positive changes in yourself—and being the change you want to see is the best way to change the world.

And one last one: You’re great, you’re wonderful, and everybody likes you. (Okay, so that one was Rodney Dangerfield, but it felt apropos!)

Not all of these will apply to everyone but they can get you thinking of things that do apply to you. As you take the time to appreciate yourself, realize that you do play an important part in many other people’s lives.

Thought for the day: A dear friend once told me, “You can search throughout the entire universe for someone who is more deserving of your love and affection than you are yourself, and that person is not found anywhere. You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe deserves your love and affection.”

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