Do good anyway

"The good you do today will often be forgotten tomorrow. Do good anyway." - Mother Teresa

How hard is that?  I can't even begin to count how many times I've been in a situation where someone is upset with me and the only thing coming out of their mouth are all the negative things they can remember about me.  I listen to them list off all the things I'm doing wrong and wonder why they can't seem to remember any of the positive things I've done because I'm pretty sure I've done a few of those as well.  Why don't I get credit for those positive things when you're upset?

I've been on the giving end of that anger as well. I let it all the tiny things boil up until they come out in a rage of anger and pain that makes them seem like big things. And then I feel terrible. I imagine most of us can relate.

When I'm angry I let all those negative emotions come out and the positive ones, those ones that could possibly make me feel better, those get pushed aside.  I don't want to feel better in that moment, I want something to justify my feelings. I am angry, upset, and hurt and remembering all those negative things gives me permission to feel that way.  If I allow myself to stop and remember all those great things you have done for me then I'm going to realize that perhaps you're not so bad after all and that perhaps, right now, I'm being a jerk.  Nope, in that moment I'm not going there.

We've all been there.  We've been on both ends of those feelings and it sucks either way.

Why should I continue to do good things when all I ever hear about are the things I've done wrong?  Because it matters.  What you do matters, even if it's quickly forgotten. That's not to say that all good things are forgotten, because what you do does make an impact. You are changing lives every day. You are making a difference.  People see you, they hear you, and they respond even if you don't see it yourself.

Smile at that stranger on the sidewalk. Say thank you to the barista at the coffee shop. Compliment your coworkers outfit. Share your dessert with a friend. Say yes, even when you want to say no. Put in the extra effort. Do more than what is asked.

You are making a difference.  Keep it up.