Monday, November 10, 2008

My soap box for the day.....and lesson learned.

Posted by Dori Nottingham

When in what the Romans do. Isn't that the old adage. This last weekend my discouraging thoughts took me exactly to that place. Not particularly to Rome (much to my disappointment) but to just do what everybody else does and nothing more. For example....I deciding that the majority of people are selfish and think only of themselves. Why can't I do that and be happy too? Why do I have to be concerned about other people? Why am I sacrificing and nobody else seems to be? So.....I went to Rome so to speak and acted purely for myself. I didn't put my cart back in the cart return at the grocery store.
This selfish act put me on a spiral of self pity and I'm sure that is the reason you start to notice the rude and selfish behavior of others in the first place. You become offended, your needs weren't met, or to be frank....they didn't notice what you had done for them. You want the same treatment that you dish out to others. The golden rule so to speak.

For about 30 hours my thoughts were bitter, they were focused on myself and what else I could do to let the world know that I was joining the crowd. It consumed me and I have to admit I didn't like it. I was actually plotting my selfish behavior and how it would hurt other people. How they would notice that I wasn't thinking of them anymore and how any niceties that once existed would long be forgotten.

But I was quickly reminded thank goodness, that is not what life is about. The truth is...that if everybody walked their cart to the cart return it would be an easier life for everybody. Easier for the next car who parked, easier for the car owner risking a runaway in the wind, easier for the store clerk who collects the carts, easier for the store owner who might have to be another, and easier for me who burns more calories and feels good about her standing in the community by being a responsible citizen and grocery shopper.

We all do make a difference and truly we cannot stop doing what we know to be right just because the world around us doesn't seem to care. The world might not notice us as an individual but the affects may ripple far beyond our vision or understanding. It's good for the soul, it's good for other people, and the world is a better place because of the good we may choose to do. While I'm still probably 98% selfish I can work on increasing that 2%. When I do, my troubles will disappear and I can work on Rome becoming the place that I want it to be. A shallow and meaningful lesson for the least for this grocery shopper.


I totally ditched the cart in the middle of the parking lot right before I read this. I actually park by the cart returns just so I will put the carts back. I usually don't mind returning them, but I am really bad when I'm nauseous or have any other dumb excuse (assuming I'm nowhere near the cart return) So thanks for the reminder that if we all do our part, our world is simply and ideally a better place. And I do truly believe a smile can go longer than we can even comprehend.