Best Three Ways to Be a Better Human Being

Respect (song)

Respect (song) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A lot of my posts have centered around this type of theme.  Maybe it comes from all of the soul searching I’ve been doing lately.  Situations, events and people that I’ve come across in the last few days, week, month and years have helped me package the type of person that I want to be or striving to be (change can’t happen overnight – that I know and understand).

So for this post, I want to focus on the ways that I believe would make me and everyone a better human being.  These are not huge shifts in behavior but small changes that can grow to major changes in my life and yours.  I believe that these changes all begins with our behaviors, attitudes, moral compasses and that if we understand how these changes affect others and the world around us, they may not seem as drastic or hard to make.

So here are ways I’m suggesting to be a better human being.

1.  Respect the planet

2.  Respect your fellow human beings

3. Put yourself in someone else’s shoes

I’ll start by saying, I’m not an environmentalist and I don’t claim to understand everything there is about climate change – I know the basics.  Yet, I leave on this planet and have seen some of the devastation that hurt it – oil spills, nuclear disasters, landfills etc.  Being a better human being is not hard in this case and really starts with some of the small things – I’m not asking you to go out and join Greenpeace.  No, just look at your lifestyle and make small changes – that way you are respecting the planet.  Try recycling, composting, putting your garbage in an actual garbage – its amazing the people that don’t do this!  Respect the planet.  I want it to be here for my kids and their kids…and that has to start with me.

Respect your fellow human beings.  This is a simple change.  Respect their rights, their culture, their religion and even their values and opinions.   If you don’t agree with them – fine – but don’t go out of your way to be hurtful – just say nothing.  Respecting our fellow human beings is one of the key ways to be a better human being.  Say hi to someone, say thank you or please.  That is respect.

Putting yourself in someone else’s shoes is a positive way to become a better human being.  A lot of us live in a world of privilege and don’t even realize how many doors are open to us.  Putting yourself in someone else’s shoes provides an insight into a life you might never have know.  It doesn’t make you an expert but it gives you a better understanding of where people are coming from.  Sometimes it can be humbling.  To bring us down a level on our superiority complex – to simply realize that access to water for some people is a luxury but not something we think about twice.

Best Three Things that I’m Thankful For

As I get older I’ve begun to look back on my life and realize that I’m truly a blessed person.  I don’t use the word as a religious term but one that I use to help describe the amount of things in my life that I’m thankful for.  In context, there are still lots of things I don’t have but as the years start to climb, I’ve realized that they are just things – things I want but not things I necessarily need.  However, the things that I’m thankful for are truly the things that I need and want in my life.

In a society that is materialistic, vain and consumer driven, its nice to step back from all of that and simply look at my life and see the things that I would be devastated without and the things that I wouldn’t even notice were missing if they were.  That is why I’ve dedicated this post to the best three things that I’m thankful for.

1.  My family

2. The roof over my head and food in my belly

3.  My freedom

I think a lot of people would have their family as the first thing to be thankful for – so I’m not alone.  I have to say it (and I know other may disagree) but my family is the greatest.

I have been blessed with a father and mother who are the epitome of the ultimate parents.  They have raised me, clothed me, fed me and loved me.  They allowed me to grow, allowed me to make good and bad choices – while always there in the background when I needed them.  They always put my needs before their own.  They taught me manners, values, ethics.  They believed in me, even when I didn’t believe in myself.  They encouraged me, guided me and provided me with every opportunity they could.  They are what every parents should be and I’m lucky to have them.  My siblings, I know would echo my words and sentiments.

I was also blessed with an older brother and sister.  A brother that was always interested in showing me all the things out there in the world and of course an older sister that always looked out for me and is not only a sister but also my best friend.

Full Siblings

Full Siblings (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I have also been lucky to find the love of my life and someone that rounds out my family.  He means everything to me and there is not a day that goes by that I’m not thankful that he had the patience to wait for me because I couldn’t imagine my life without him.

The second thing that I’m thankful for is the roof over my head (my house) and the food in my belly.  I once went to a lecture that a local university was sponsoring about the life of a Holocaust survivor.  I can still remember the silence of the room as an older man took to the stage and looked up at the audience and said “None of you know what its like to be so hungry, to be humiliated, to have everything taken away…”   They were words I never forgot.  He went on to talk about being hungry and as he talked, he broke down and started crying.  I never forgot that.  That is why I’m thankful to have a house that shelters me from the elements and I’m so thankful that I have never had to feel hungry.

The last thing that I’m thankful for is my freedom.  There is nothing else I can say to that.