Go ahead and be nice…

August 23, 2022

In today’s post to his blog, Jack’s Winning Words, Pastor Freed used this quote – “Everybody’d be nice to you if they knew you were dying.”  (Bruce – Robert DeNiro – in Bang the Drum Slowly

The ironic reality is that everyone will be dying, we just don’t know when. Maybe we should all be nice to one another, since all of us will die someday, somehow; we just don’t know when or how.

We often hear people saying, “I wish I had the chance to tell him/her that I loved him/her before they died.” The sad fact is that you did and in some cases still do have that chance to tell them, but you did not (or do not) take it. Perhaps if we start each day with a mental to-do list that includes being nice to all that we meet and telling our loved ones how much they mean to us, we will not end the day with regrets.

I often see T-shirts with the message “Be Nice” on them. I don’t recall seeing any with the message “Be Mean”. Maybe, if you can imagine that everyone that you encounter during the day is wearing a Be Nice T-shirt, that will help you be nice to them, too.

The real opposite of being nice is not really being mean, it is being indifferent. When we encounter a stranger, maybe even one who is obviously in need or distress, we all too often indifferent to them. We do not take the opportunity to inquire about them for fear that they will ask something of us. We feel that we are much too busy with issues or priorities in our own lives to take time to listen to their concerns or needs. We’re not being mean; we are just being (or trying to be) indifferent.

Every Sunday morning at church we start the service with a confession of our sins and we use the phrase, “things that we have done and things lefty undone” to define those sins. I often reflect on those opportunities that I left undone during the week out of indifference to someone else. What comes to your mind?

So, put on your mental “Be Nice” T-shit every day and guard against indifference. Have in mind that everybody that you meet that day is dying someday – maybe today.

So, go ahead and be nice to them while you can.


Say something nice to somebody today…

March 1, 2018

From the blog Jack’s Winning Words comes this quote of the day – “Why do we have to wait for special moments to say nice things or tell people we care about them?”  (Randy Milholland)

Jack went on to tell a little of Randy’s life success story because someone took the time to say something to him in his youth.

I believe that there is also a benefit to you if you take the time to say something nice to someone – it makes you feel better, too. Taking the time, making that effort to think of handshakesomething nice to say to someone puts you in a positive frame of mind, because you are being positive and not just finding fault with that person. It can be something as small as “your hair looks great today” or maybe just “you look great today”. You’ll probably get a smile and maybe a reply and it will usually be positive, which helps reinforce the positive vibe that you were on when you made the comment.

The second positive thing from doing this is that it puts you “out there”. By making the comment, you reached out from your protective shell and touched someone else in his or her shell. If you get a response, you have the beginning of a conversation and perhaps a relationship building moment. Humans are really all about interacting with other humans and it can be very lonely if you never take the opportunity to interact. Even if you just a get a fleeting, “Thanks”, from the person as they scurry away, you tried and they did acknowledge you. Perhaps the next time that you meet, they’ll have more time and they’ll remember that you’re the one who said something nice to them.

this-is-meAnother side-benefit of making the effort to say something nice is that it will usually put a smile on your face, which may be a pleasant change from your normal “at rest” face. It is quite natural that most people’s faces droop a bit into what might be interpreted as a frown by others. You aren’t really unhappy or trying to frown and probably don’t realize that your “at rest” face doesn’t look inviting or friendly. By conscientiously preparing to say something nice you will reflexively put a little smile on your face, which will be a pleasant change for those that you meet.

So, go out there today prepared to say something nice to those that you meet. You will make it a much more pleasant day for them and I think you’ll find that you have a much more pleasant day, too. Bye the way; you look great today; have you been losing weight; is that a new hair style for you; where did you get that great outfit? I feel better already. How about you?