Paying It Backwards: Reflection of One’s Self

A few years ago there was a growing trend of people who began ‘Paying It Backwards’.  In essence people would pay for the meal of the car behind them in a fast food drive-thru.  The movement never gained much traction, but it was still nice to see people performing random acts of kindness in any shape or form.

In today’s day and age selfishness and hypocrisy have become conventional.  People ask themselves, “what is in it for me?” Why can’t anyone step up to the plate and just do the right thing?

Gone are the days of looking out for your family and neighbor.  Gone are the days of paying it forward.  Unless, of course, you are on probation or need some class credits.  The most troubling part of it all is that people seem to feel better about themselves when they see others fail.  I suppose we all have a greater desire to succeed than regard for others’ failures.  That doesn’t make it acceptable.

As humans it is our nature to avoid confrontation in the same regard.  So rarely do we look ourselves in the mirror for any reason other than grooming.  Why should we?  Most all of us are wired to be selfish hypocrites.  The majority of our lives are spent justifying the decisions we have made.  If you are doing the right thing you really shouldn’t need any justification or satisfaction, truth be told.

Just because we are wired to be that way doesn’t mean that we can’t change.  People change everyday.  Some require church or therapy to assist them in grasping a silver lining.  Others learn through experiences and/or failures.  Being able to sit down and reflect upon things in the proper perspective is an amazing attribute to possess.  Once you learn to admit your own faults and problems it becomes much easier to adjust your own habits.  It also increases your desire to help others.

The next time you feel the urge to take joy in someone’s misfortune stop and ask yourself how perfect you really are.  Better yet, why not try to assist the unfortunate soul?  At the very least you will feel better about yourself and give the person a chance to change their own perspective.

  • “Every man carries with him through life a mirror, as unique and impossible to get rid of as his shadow.” ~ W.H. Auden
  • ““Trust is like a mirror, you can fix it if it’s broken, but you can still see the crack in that mother fucker’s reflection.”~ Lady Gaga

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