Lead the life that will make you kindly and friendly to everyone about you, and you will be surprised what a happy life you will lead.
Charles M. Schwab
Have you noticed how folks with a positive attitude and a smile always seem to attract really neat people around them? It is almost like people attract people who are like themselves. Those who are angry at the world and what’s around them spend a lot of time commiserating with others as they look for someone to blame for their supposed plight. It is the same for the chronic complainer they love sitting with others finding fault with everything they can find to criticize.
I think this reality is so prevalent that you can almost predict someone’s outlook by the friends they have around them. I know you are not a grouch but if you know someone who is you might want to suggest that they might be happier if they smiled more and looked around for what is right in their lives and not dwell on what isn’t.
Here is a Japanese folktale that we all should think about once in a while.
The House of 1000 Mirrors
Long ago in a small, far away village, there was place known as the House of 1000 Mirrors. A small, happy little dog learned of this place and decided to visit. When he arrived, he bounced happily up the stairs to the doorway of the house. He looked through the doorway with his ears lifted high and his tail wagging as fast as it could. To his great surprise, he found himself staring at 1000 other happy little dogs with their tails wagging just as fast as his. He smiled a great smile, and was answered with 1000 great smiles just as warm and friendly. As he left the House, he thought to himself, “This is a wonderful place. I will come back and visit it often.”
In this same village, another little dog, who was not quite as happy as the first one, decided to visit the house. He slowly climbed the stairs and hung his head low as he looked into the door. When he saw the 1000 unfriendly looking dogs staring back at him, he growled at them and was horrified to see 1000 little dogs growling back at him. As he left, he thought to himself, “That is a horrible place, and I will never go back there again.”
All the faces in the world are mirrors. What kind of reflections do you see in the faces of the people you meet?
Today, give yourself permission to be outrageously kind, irrationally warm, improbably generous. I promise it will be a blast.
A man was lying on the psychiatrist’s couch as his therapist addressed him. “Well, Jim. I’m pleased to announce that this will be our final session. I believe that you finally are cured of your paranoia.”
“Yes, doctor. I am.”
“I remember how you used to think that men in black were following you everywhere. But you don’t believe that anymore, do you?”
“No, doctor. I don’t”
“I remember also how you used to think that black helicopters were hovering over your house. But you don’t believe that anymore either, do you?”
“No, doctor. I don’t”
“Finally, I remember how you used to think that CIA agents were monitoring your mail, bugging your phone, and snooping into your affairs. But you don’t beleieve that anymore either, do you?”
“No, doctor. I don’t. Thanks to your therapy, I no longer harbor such delusions. In fact, you’ve been so helpful to me, that I’m really sorry that I have to kill you now,” said Jim, as he pulled out a gun. The psychiatrist was shocked. “Wait a minute. Why do you have to kill me?”
“You know too much.”
Do Roman paramedics refer to IV’s as “4’s”?
A woman named Emily renewing her driver’s license at the County Clerk’s office was asked by the woman recorder to state her occupation, She hesitated, uncertain how to classify herself. “What I mean is,” explained the recorder, “do you have a job, or are you just a . . . .?”
“Of course I have a job,” snapped Emily.”I’m a Mom.”
“We don’t list ‘Mom’ as an occupation. ‘Housewife’ covers it,” said the recorder emphatically.
I forgot all about her story until one day I found myself in the same situation….this time at our own Town Hall. The Clerk was obviously a career woman, poised, efficient, and possessed of a high sounding title like, “Official Interrogator” or “Town Registrar”. “What is your occupation?” she probed. What made me say it, I do not know? The words simply popped out.
“I’m a Research Associate in the field of Child Development and Human Relations”
The clerk paused, ball-point pen frozen in midair, and looked up as though she had not heard right. I repeated the title slowly, emphasizing the most significant words. Then I stared with wonder as my pronouncement was written in bold, black ink on the official questionnaire.
“Might I ask,” said the clerk with new interest, “just what you do in your field?”
Coolly, without any trace of fluster in my voice, I heard myself reply, “I have a continuing program of research, (what mother doesn’t), in the laboratory and in the field, (normally I would have said indoors and out).
I’m working for my Masters!, (the whole darned family), and already have four credits, (all daughters).Of course, the job is one of the most demanding in the humanities, (any mother care to disagree?), and I often work 14 hours a day, (24 is more like it). But the job is more challenging than most run-of-the-mill careers and the rewards are more of a satisfaction rather than just money.”
There was an increasing note of respect in the clerk’s voice as she completed the form, stood up, and personally ushered me to the door.
As I drove into our driveway, buoyed up by my glamorous new career, I was greeted by my lab assistants — ages 13, 7, and 3. Upstairs I could hear our new experimental model, (a 6 month old baby), in the child-development program, testing out a new vocal pattern. I felt I had scored a beat on bureaucracy! And I had gone on the official records as someone more distinguished and indispensable to mankind than “just another Mom.”
Motherhood . . ..What a glorious career! Especially when there’s a title on the door. Does this make grandmothers “Senior Research Associates in the field of Child Development and Human Relations” and great grandmothers “Executive Senior Research Associates also think it makes Aunts “Associate Research Assistants”?
You cannot do a kindness too soon, for you never know how soon it will be too late.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
A journalist assigned to the Jerusalem bureau takes an apartment overlooking the Wailing Wall. Every day when she looks out, she sees an old Jewish man praying vigorously. So, the journalist goes down and introduces herself to the old man.
She asks, “You come every day to the wall. How long have you done that, and what are you praying for?”
The old man replies, “I have come here to pray every day for 25 years. In the morning I pray for world peace and then for the brotherhood of man. I go home, have a cup of tea, and I come back and pray for the eradication of illness and disease from the earth.”
The journalist is amazed. “How does it make you feel to come here every day for 25 years and pray for these things?” she asks.
The old man looks at her sadly. “Like I’m talking to a wall.”
If you want trust, trust others. If you want respect, respect others. If you want help, help others. If you want love and peace in your life, give them away. If you want great friends, be one. That’s how it works.
Stay well, do good work, and have fun.
Management is not responsible for duplicates from previous dailies. The editor is somewhat senile.
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