“You don't lose yourself being selfless—you find yourself.”
Choosing a Random Act of Kindness TargetThis blog is part of a collaboration with Aubrey Eastway, a well-organized, beautiful, inspirational woman. Read her portion of the blog at www.528squarefeet.blogspot.com and please leave feedback for both of us :D
Finding SelflessThe hardest part about being selfless is learning what it looks like. Selflessness can come in so many forms. Some of us are born selfless, with an intrinsic understanding that the word "NO" is not in our vocabulary. Some of us are born looking for those who are selfless because we need those people in our lives.
It goes against human nature to be selfless; this human existence is based on the idea that we look out for ourselves first, and our family and loved ones next. But, that isn't the true spirit of selflessness. When we love people so strongly that we want to protect them, they become a part of us, and it's almost like self-preservation. Stay with me, here. At times, my mental health can be linked directly to those who are closest to me. If I do something to help them, I am (sometimes) also helping myself. This is why we have to actively find ourselves in order to be our best self to others.
Becoming Who We Are — QuestioningI am a firm believer in questions. Questioning our own feelings, emotions, and motivations is our own system of checks and balances to keep us sane and happy. Before I began The Human Worth Project, my unbridled good spirits led me to pay for meals for strangers all the time. I hold doors for women (and men!), I do something extra to make sure I have helped them. And, for me, it was easy. I have good genes when it comes to that kind of thing. When my sponsor GH handed over the $200 for me to go out and do good, I was shocked. I was so thrilled that I knew it was something that needed to be shared. But, it all started with one question. I wanted to know who deserved my kindness more. My two "perfect world" examples:
An older couple, in their 60's sits down to eat breakfast. They talk of the large party they are throwing over the weekend at their second home to welcome a new baby to their family. There will be a live band and the event will be catered. They talk and laugh, and seem completely at ease. When the bill comes, they swipe a card without ever looking at the bill.
Another couple, in their early 20's sits down to breakfast with their new baby. They take a few minutes to decide on meals as they tend to their fussy child. When their meal is delivered, they split the stack of pancakes down the middle and share their portion. When the bill comes, they dig for wadded up bills in the young woman's purse.
So who deserves my kindness more? Who would appreciate my kindness more? Who is most likely to pass along my kindness?
Finding Love is Easy, Because It Is EverywhereThere is no correct answer on who deserves kindness, because it goes above being deserved. People will not always deserve your time, give it to them anyway. People will not always appreciate your smile, but shine bright anyway. If I go out every single day trying to be the person that makes myself proud and happy, then it will not matter who didn't appreciate my time, my smile, my love, my words. Because for every soul out there who doesn't appreciate these things, there are SO many more who do. And being a light for those people is what The Human Worth Project is all about.
There should be no limits to your kindness. The homeless woman deserves your kindness. The clerk at the gas station deserves your kindness. Let's try this...
THERE IS NOBODY WHO IS NOT WORTHY OF YOUR KINDNESS.
You truly never know when your smile or your kind words are going to help turn someone's day around. I tell you this from experience. There are thousands of reasons to go out and be kind, and zero excuses to sit back and watch the world turn.
Check Your Motives At The DoorLike, CHECK YO SELF. I know that I've had to. Because all of a sudden, when I started focusing on sharing my experiences with YOU, it became less and less about my experience as a Human. I began to think about the next photo opportunity, or what groups we could pair with to get us featured. And I started to lose sight. It took me about $10 out of $200 to realize where I was getting lost. It just doesn't feel like giving, when your motivation is publicity. Publicity I could take it or leave it, but I need to get the word out so that we can help encourage people to participate.
I sat down and asked myself where and what my motives were for this project.
Where I want my motives: I want a complete stranger to know there are people in the world who love him/her, regardless of past mistakes experiences, decisions, sexual orientation, gender, color, shoes, etc. To love and be loved is the best gift on Earth, and I think as humans, as The Human Worth Project humans, we need to be aware of the love within ourselves, and the love that resides within others. I need to find someone each day that deserves love and provide that in any way that I am able. Because at the end of the day, I am only helping myself to live a better life as a Human.