I remember being taught to hold my breath or count to 10 before saying anything I would regret. I’ve had to use this technique on occasion. It’s wise council.
But what about when you feel like saying something nice?
How often do we withhold compliments or expressions of appreciation and love? Why?
I had this happen this morning.
I was driving to the office and felt like I should text my girlfriend a compliment. I was stopped at a light and thought about what I should say, but I chose not to. The light changed and I continued on. The thought wouldn’t leave my mind, but I still didn’t do it.
I finally got to the office and sent a quick message asking about her morning. I wanted to say more, but I felt like the moment had passed. We exchanged some typical morning pleasantries, but I had failed to tell her what I really wanted to say. I failed to make her feel more appreciated and loved.
Again I ask, why?
There was no good reason for me not to. Was I being lazy? Was I being selfish?
Too often we let moments pass by us with family, friends, and even strangers, where we could uplift and encourage another, and yet we choose not to.
I have forced myself to compliment strangers in the past, trying to work on this very thing. And yet today, with one of the most important people in my world, I blew it.
How often do we pass through life being little more than acquaintances to those that matter most?
Being a man means a lot of things, but to me it most importantly means doing the right things, when you should do them, because that’s the right thing to do. Unfortunately, perhaps especially with the little things, it’s not always the easiest thing to do.
We have the opportunity to be a positive or negative influence on the world every day. We should obviously strive to be positive. There is a third option though. We also have the opportunity to be a neutral, impact-less influence. Are we settling for that?
Whether it is in acting as a father, husband, or in our everyday world, we get to choose if and how we will impact the world. How will we influence others?
3 things to do today!
Let’s not allow another day to pass without taking an intentional approach to our impact as a man. Here are three things I would challenge you to do today to begin developing better habits and a more positive influence on your world.
- Find one person you would normally never interact with to compliment.
- Perhaps it’s a stranger or acquaintance. This allows you to begin getting out of your comfort zone. The easier it becomes to compliment those we know little, the easier it will feel to compliment those we love.
- Give at least one extra compliment to each of the ones you love in your daily life.
- This means that today you need to go out of your way to compliment and/or express your love and appreciation for your family.
- Compliment yourself
- We are probably one of the most neglected people in our lives. Most men tend to put their needs last when it comes to feeling approved and appreciated. Acknowledge at least one thing about yourself today that makes you feel good about being you.
So there it is, your challenge to start developing the habit of saying the kind thoughts that come into your mind each day. I know I will be doing this better myself.
If you apply these three steps to each day, you will soon find that it comes quite naturally to be the one known for their uplifting and kind words. Those words are what will set you apart in your relationship, family, personal and professional life. You will find you are happier. You will feel more and more like an Upright Man.
Question: What is one thing you already do each day to make you feel better about who you are? Leave a comment below.