Are you a good person?
I don’t doubt that many of us think that we at least try to be good people. Our parents, teachers, and religious leaders instruct us to be good and do good works.
There are quite a few good ways to be good. All of them entail a certain amount of selflessness and are worth the effort.
What Goes Around, Comes Around
You may have heard the saying, “What goes around, comes around.” This premise encourages us to do good things if we want to have good happen to ourselves. Karma is very much like this. It is very cause and effect.
An example of this type of benevolence is helping a neighbor shovel the sidewalk in hopes of them doing the same for you the next time. Another example is donating money to worthy causes that count as a tax deduction. Everyone wins.
Of course, karma can work negatively too, so one needs to be careful not to harm anyone or screw up.
A little positive or negative reinforcement can encourage us to do the right thing from time to time, but it isn’t always the best reason to do something? Doing good deeds only to get something in return can appear more selfish than selfless.
Paying It Forward
Another way of doing good deeds is by “paying it forward.” The simplest way to explain this premise is when someone does something for you, you pass it on to another person instead of paying that person back directly.
There are stories of someone buying a coffee for the next person in the drive-through or teaching business skills they developed over the years to entrepreneurs. The good deed doesn’t get anything in return, but the encouragement of doing good deeds is passed on to the next person. Usually, people get some recognition for paying it forward, but not always.
Paying it forward is a noble pursuit, and our world would be a better place if more people considered it.
Simple Act of Kindness
Good deeds don’t have to be huge, elaborate plans. Sometimes the smallest of actions can improve the world around us. The more selfless you are about them, the better.
Some examples of these deeds are, holding the door open for the person behind you, picking up something someone else dropped, or throwing away the trash next to the public garbage can. Sometimes just smiling at someone when you make eye contact can be a good deed.
Practicing tiny acts of kindness every day can slowly transform them into everyday actions and good habits. Just as when someone sneezes, and we say “God bless you,” we can automatically perform simple good deeds and not need an affirmation.
No matter the type of good deed we choose, we should consider doing more of them. Don’t worry too much about the intention. We may never be able to be perfect, but we can easily be good people.