Stay at home! Stay the F at home! Mind your own business! Wear a mask!
Another week in quarantine and tensions are running high.
I have been amazed at the shaming taking place on-line. People posting pictures of their neighbors outside doing things that they don't deem appropriate. Whether it is riding their bike, walking with a friend or family member, getting take-out food, or not wearing a mask and gloves in public. YES we should be social distancing, YES we should be protecting ourselves (and each other) in public places with facial coverings and gloves, and YES, we should be staying in our homes unless it is absolutely necessary to leave.
But is it really as easy as it sounds?
I see many people saying "If I have to stay home, you should to." Yes, it sounds easy enough in theory, but for some, isolating themselves from all human interaction and contact can and is having negative consequences. Many are battling demons we know nothing about.....
While it can be easy to call others selfish and inconsiderate for not abiding by every guideline, sometimes an ounce of compassion would go a long way.
We are all experiencing this pandemic in our own personal ways. Varying emotions, feelings, and thoughts throughout the day. I know personally that I am motivated and inspired one minute, and on the verge of tears the next. And I have no clue why or how. Talk about riding that roller coaster of emotions - the highs and lows are real folks!
So let's consider something….
What if we woke up tomorrow and all assumed this:
"Everyone is doing the best that they can."
No judging, no questioning choices, no shaming. Just assume that each person is truly doing the best that they know how in this chaotic and stressful time.
How would that change your thoughts and reactions to the people you see outside, at the supermarket, and the post you see on social media?
It's easy to just think that everyone else is selfish and irresponsible if they aren't doing things the way that you think they should. But I encourage you to pause the next time you want to criticize someone else's choices - whether you do it mentally, or (worse) publicly on social media.
We are all struggling.
We are all fighting some demons - depression, anxiety, anger, regret, disappointment….the list goes on and on.
We could all use a kind word, a smile, an encouraging message.
So food for thought:
The next time you find yourself wanting to criticize someone or shoot them a disapproving glance at the store. Try sharing a smile or sending an encouraging word instead. You never know the impact it can have on someone's day. And I can assure you, we could ALL use more positive vibes in our day.
And remember, kindness is contagious too....
Take care, stay safe, and keep your head up - this too shall pass.