Be the Better Person
How do you become the better person? A simple question but one with the potential to change you, your very essence. Becoming a better person means you have to change your life, change the way you do, view and expect things of yourself. Becoming the better person means giving of yourself more, raising your expectations of yourself and changing the way you deal with difficult people. When you become a better person not only will you feel better about yourself, but others will look at you differently.
Being the better person is not about being self righteous or proud. It’s being humble in the moment. It’s taking responsibility when things go wrong even when its not your place to. It’s giving of yourself, your time, your treasures and your talents. Its taking pride in the way you conduct yourself. Learn and challenge yourself to do the right thing every time. It’s not complicated but it does take dedication. How do you do this?
You start by giving. Giving is fundamental to becoming a better person. We give, not to receive anything in return, but only for their benefit and our giving can come in many different forms. It could be money, time or our talents. Most of the time money is the easiest and quickest way for us to help and what is needed most. Other times it’s our time or our talent that is needed.
What I say next might sound strange to you but it is indeed true and can’t be stressed enough. When you give freely you are, on a fundamental level, receiving. You get more in return then what you give. It doesn’t matter if you’re giving from your pocketbook, your time or your talents. Strange as that sounds it is true. You know what else it does? It helps make you a better person. You will feel better about yourself and others will begin seeing you in a different light.
I’m going to share with you a little about myself. Giving for me didn’t come naturally. In the beginning I had to force myself to give to others. Literally, I had to consciously make myself pull my wallet from my back pocket, open it up and remove money to give to others. I’m not referring to when I was paying a bill, but when I was giving freely to another and not receiving anything in return. Not ever going to receive anything in return.
The funny thing is, once I had made that initial gift, it became easier and easier for me to give. I didn’t miss this money. It didn’t take food off my table. It didn’t stop me from going out, missing a movie or seeing my friends.
What it did was to make me feel better about myself. Not in a prideful way but in a heartfelt way. For the first time I was giving without the expectation of return and it felt good. So what did I do? I gave more, not always with money but of my time and my talents. If someone needed help fixing something and I knew how to then I would. I was becoming a better person.
Giving our time can be as simple as lending a sympathetic ear to someone in need. Listening in a time of need is huge and can be very impactful in someone’s life.
Maybe the shelter needs help on the weekend or maybe just making coffee at your church. Visit a senior center or a children’s hospital. The list is endless.
If giving money isn’t possible you can still help a neighbor, maybe they need wood cut or the alternator on their car replaced. . All we have to do is look around for opportunities to give and they will fall in our lap.
Become a better person.
Raise your expectations for yourself. To become a better you, commit to improving yourself on a daily basis, making it a priority in your life. We improve ourselves by continuing to learn, challenging ourselves and developing personal guidelines for our life.
Everyday we should commit to learning something new. Sign up for a daily email on life hacks. Learn a new word everyday and double your working vocabulary in six to twelve months Get your GED or high school equivalency. Take a college course. The important thing in all of this is making the commitment and then following through.
Another way of raising your expectations is by challenging yourself in various aspects of your life. Get outside of your safety zone, you know, that box you’ve built around yourself. Ride the roller coaster, dive off the high dive or ride a motorcycle. Do something that has always frightened you, test yourself so you can break free of your comfort zone.
Breaking free of that comfort zone allows you to grow. Hang out with new and different people, people that are smarter then you. People that are creative. Mine them for ideas and thoughts on life and growth. Start imaging what you can become.
Journal. It doesn’t make any difference if you’re not a Pulitzer Prize winning author, just write. But my handwriting is terrible. So what! Write! Use a computer, a lap top or a tablet if you have to. Not only will your writing improve but so will your vocabulary. A win win.
Changing isn’t always easy but it is worth it. Even when you’re having to take baby steps, be sure you’re stepping up and not down.
Part of the change we’ve been talking about involves dealing with difficult people. Changing the way you deal with difficult people will change you, your being, for the better. I’m betting that you think I’m crazy right about now but if you just hang with me for a bit I’ll show you what I mean.
DIFFICULT PEOPLE! How do you deal with that person? Why are you having to deal with that person? I think the better question is, what is a difficult person? Difficult; challenging, demanding, stubborn, stressful, pig-headed, asinine, dark, etc. Dealing with that person often comes down to why they are angry and perhaps even the nature of that person.
Difficult people are everywhere and how we deal with them defines us not them. Being the better person in every situation can’t be stressed enough.
Sounds easy saying it, but how do you take the volume out of the conversation when you’re in the middle of the confrontation? It’s not easy when your blood pressure is rising so here’s a few ideas for you to use.
Having been in the customer service industry I have been put in the uncomfortable position of having to deal with this person face to face. Remaining calm as Mr. Difficult used a flame thrower on me was one of the hardest things for me to do, but when I learned how to handle myself I became the go to guy. Learning how to handle myself was the key.
First, take a deep breath and remain calm. Don’t raise your voice to match their level but keep it as conversational as possible. Ask questions so you can understand what the issue is, getting as many facts as possible. Only after understanding what the actual problem is can you begin to have a conversation. Elevating the other person’s ire serves no purpose and has no place in any conversation. No, these suggestions are not always going to work, but it is a starting point.
Information and remaining calm are key to resolving issues. Once both parties are on the same page the lens they’re looking at each other through clears and a way to solving the problem opens.
Don’t ever go to their level, when you do you lose even if you ultimately win the argument, you lose. If you don’t believe me think back to the last time you saw or were part of an argument. That’s why it is of utmost importance to always remain calm. You can make your point without being part of the problem.
Be the better person every time.
Unfortunately you won’t defuse or win in every situation and honestly that might be because you are the problem. Some people are just difficult, not because they want to be, but because they’re stressed or its just part of their nature. It comes natural to some people, its in their DNA. Most of the time they don’t even realize they’re the problem.
There are some Dpeople that use this trait to get things undeservedly. Dealing with these Dpeople is problematic and usually best handled by the one who can directly resolve their issue. Pleasing them is an almost impossible task without giving in to their demands, so don’t try. As a side note, if you’re in customer service, always follow company policy but be sympathetic to their side also, their issue could be legitimate.
The solution to dealing with difficult people resides with you and in your response. Remain calm, ask questions, understand the problem and be sympathetic to their issue. If you are unsuccessful after having done your best call in help or walk away.
Always be the better person and once you get started on this path of raising your expectations and improving yourself, you will begin setting goals and then blowing through them.
Each time you accomplish a goal your eyes will open a little wider and your imagination will stretch a little further. The bar you set for yourself will raise a little higher and your expectations will rise. That box you used to have yourself in will have exploded and turned to dust. Maybe not overnight and sometimes not even in a month, but it will start and it will happen. As long as you stay committed. Don’t let yourself go back. The climb to a better you is invaluable. Don’t settle for the old you.
Always be honest with yourself, don’t set goals you will never reach. Starting out with small achievable goals will boost your ego and provide you the incentive to go on to the next one.
Lastly. Be the better person. Be the better person in every conversation. Be the better person when you leave a tip, drive your car, negotiate the next contract, when you leave home, when you’re at home. Be the better person.
These are just a few of the ways to improve yourself. If you hang around we will continue exploring the many ways of improving yourself and raising your expectations. Be the better person every time.
Until next time…
Be the Better Person