Okay if you REALLY believe the world is going to end tomorrow, keep in mind that tomorrow 12/21 has already hit other countries. So hooray!
Now that’s addressed, onto the more important topic. Compassion.
In my latest research with Mr. Fogg from Stanford University (we’re in the process of understanding tiny habits), I have found 1 common thought that kept popping up in my mind. “Why are we not downloading the habit of acts of compassion?”
“Shit!” I thought, I am no Mother Teresa where compassion is second nature to me, and I know I am hard on myself as it is. I TRUST in realism. I TRUST in the facts. The other day, as I was retraining my habits to implement new tiny habits, I thought what the hell, I’ll add in the random act of compassion.
One of my clients made stationary, and I shared an idea with her to help bring in new business. I took this idea and I personalized it. At the end of the month on Thursday I send out a note to 3 people I want to personally thank them for who they are and also uplift them. Life happens and bad things happen, so do good things, and I felt it’s one of the most unexpected act of compassion that I could provide to those in my life. I wanted to purposefully seek out those who I normally wouldn’t thank. I shared this with my organization MOTIVATEme. in hopes that this sort of compassion will spread.
I started to sense that there is a certain frequency in our world.
Hang in there with me, I know this sounds crazy!
I’ve been “sensing” frequency ever since I overcame depression, drug addiction and cancer. Woo Hoo triple whammy!
I never was one for the ole “I had a near death experience and it makes me sensitive to situations” but I guess it does. I have an uncanny ability to feel and sense my surroundings. I feel so much that I had to train myself to stop feeling to a certain degree just to get a handle on my emotions. (I did have a trained mentor for this process)
Some people have called it intuition. I don’t know what the definition is, but I am damn happy to be able to have it for positive use.
So, my “feeling” of frequency lately is the reason why we lack so much compassion in this world, it is the feeling of competition…aka judgement.
I started to look around. I started to listen closely to HOW people were responding. HOW people were closing up and not talking or sharing. HOW people started to get angry over other peoples opinions, just because their own opinions were lacking exultation. There is a healthy competition and a healthy way to share ideas and share opinions, but in the air as of lately, i’ll be blunt, it sounds more like children arguing in a sandbox. The “I know, you don’t need to tell me, I get it” or I heard this yesterday, “What, how can you not believe the way I do?! Who are you?!” (In reference to a television show. The extreme “frequency” response of competition. See what I mean?)
Let me sharpen the scope even more for you.
Take the very gruesome act of the Sandy shooting. It makes me sick to know there are people like this in this world. However, how are we a society who is broken, handling this? Are we REALLY handling it or are we competing with the hate towards this act? Are we competing with how sad so and so is vs so and so over this act? Maybe I see and hear a different sensation on social media and discussions around me. But, the naked truth is that the issue is much larger than a “madman”:
So, how do we fix this?
I have witnessed more change in people’s lives who are going down a wrong path, myself included, through compassionate storytelling. Everyone is a storyteller. Everyone knows someone or some situation that has changed the outlook of your life and in turn it can help change the outlook of another persons life.
I think about these “mad men” who give in to their negative thoughts so far so deep they no longer remember humanity.
Consider this story….
A little boy who grows up being raised to wake up and hand Mommy her morning needle. His Mom is a stripper and a heroin addict. He has to learn how to make his own lunch, help his brothers and sisters get ready for school. He feeds everyone dinner. He tucks the kids to bed, and stays awake doing homework waiting for his Mom to come home, hopefully alive. The young boy spends the following 16 years of his life helping & worrying over his Mom. He had to grow up never knowing his father, and yet somehow, have to figure out how to be Daddy and a son. He had to learn how to walk away from fights on his own when kids would tease him for having a “Mom who is a drugged up slut”. But, the teasing continued. Since he was a kid all he knows about life is drug addiction and loneliness. All he knows is that society will judge him because other people find his family “lowly” and uneducated. He continues to grow up believing just as they do and begins to create the habit of believing he is “lowly” too. He refuses to ask for help. Instead, he lets the loneliness turn to bitterness through his adolescent life…and over time that bitterness turns to rage. At 20 years old, his mother dies of a drug overdose and the rage sets in and he begins to fight back. He starts searching for the kids who teased him as a child, who called his mother a slut. He uses the anger, the pain and the loneliness to fuel his darkest thoughts. He uses the loneliness as a reminder that no one will listen to him, that YES THIS IS ME I AM LOWLY resonates loudly in his ears, like a mantra. He spends the next 3 years of his life in and out of jail for fighting. He loses contact of his brothers and sisters who helped raise to be wonderful beings. He then loses contact with himself. He begins to think that he should find these people, kill them, and commit suicide. He feels fed up. He feels angry, and he knows his targets. They are rich, they are happy and they won’t see it coming. He starts to contemplate this idea seriously for the next 3 years while still incarcerated for rape.
At 26 years old he sits in his cell looking at the photos of the 5 kids who used to tease him, these are his targets. His face is full of no expression. His face is fearless. His eyes were black. He was a man who has gone mad. A young lady walks in to his cell, a Bible in her hand. He shakes his head looking at her up and down in approval of her beauty. He nods her over to sit in front of his cell, welcoming the hilarious conversation of “biblical chat” he was used to. She stood her ground. Firm as can be, she sat directly in front of his cell. Two guards were behind her with their arms folded behind them in a Military stance. She sits within reaching distance of him, as a silent way of saying, “I’m not afraid of you. I want to understand you.” He chuckles as soon as he realizes what she is doing. He grabs the bottom legs of the chair to pull her closer in. “Here” he says. The two guards act swiftly, but the young lady waves them down.
“What are you going to do? Try and rape me sitting here? I bet that just makes your blood boil and thicken. I bet you have SO much pent up rage that you are just waiting to bust out of here and attack someone. Such negativity is for cowards.” The young lady doesn’t remove her stare. She glares at him and he glares back.
The now man, 26 years old takes a moment of the truth she just fed to him. He isn’t sure how to respond. This conversation is not like the rest. He is taken off guard. He looks at her Bible and then he looks at her. His eyebrows start to wince, almost in pain.
The young lady notices and continues at this opportunity for breakthrough….
“You’re strong. So strong, by buying into your negative tendencies you’ve awarded yourself with countless allegations, countless acts of violence, hell you even awarded yourself with this stunning scenery. You’re so strong that you have been planning probably for quite some time, something to get back and feel your sense of confidence again. But, you know…you’re so weak that you chose to exert your strong character for violence. You’re so weak that you chose this lifestyle vs. using your strength for good. Damn. (she shakes her head, and removes her glasses, she leans in to a very attentive ear, she whispers) Your type of strength and given your hellacious childhood background, had you chosen a positive path focused on inspiring kids to stay off of drugs, or using yourself as an example of how to overcome adversity. That kind of passion could have inspired thousands….if not millions. You know you have a choice right Ted?”
The man began to weep. He wept, “No. No one ever told me I had a choice. I thought I was born this way, born into this life, born to be this type of man.”
The lady handed him the Bible, full of highlighted passages…. “Take it from me, I know your shoes. I’ve been where you stand. You have a choice. It’s all in here.”
The Naked Truth is: We are a Godless society.
My friend who is a criminologist spends a good majority of her time during Christmas finding volunteers to talk about God with prisoners. This probably was one of the most influential volunteer sessions I have ever been apart of, and it has forever changed my view on humanity.
Like I said….we’re all storytellers…and we all have scars….but where the compassion lies is in knowing we have a sick nation, and it is our duty to help with fearless non judgmental compassion.