Here is the second lockdown and with it comes a second chance to re-evaluate and maybe find ways to be a nicer person. With all the best intentions in the world and promises we make, people don’t change. It’s not in their nature. This makes altering key flaws quite a task, but it isn’t impossible.
In a society where people’s behaviours are readily mistaken and quickly judged, it makes trying to change for the better even more difficult. For example, a person who appears rude because they have extreme anxiety. Or a person’s strange behaviour due to OCD/PTSD that causes others to exclude them or brand them derogatory labels. Such conditions can affect an individual’s motivation to try and change for the better. Because, what’s the point? It can feel like an uphill battle on a landslide. Well, as my nan says, “Never give up.” That is the point. It’s a domino effect. Being nicer helps you and others become happier; it has a knock-on effect. Ultimately, we are all the same. We are all here to be the best we can be. Here are 6 ways I have found that have helped me to be a better person.
1.Squash the Negative
If you are feeling the negativity creep in and spiderweb over your thoughts, squash it. Immediately recognise it for just being negativity and, instead, replace it with a positive thought. Should you be in an environment that makes you feel down, grab your coat and go and get some exercise. It’s amazing how much this can change your outlook, and therefore your day. In turn, your attitude towards others will improve.
2. If You Don’t Like Someone
This can be tricky as there are many reasons for not liking a person. Take a step back and think about the main reason and see if it can be resolved. Should it be a case of just annoyance, think of something they do that is nice. Each time you feel agitated, look for a positive about that person to balance it out. Failing that, avoidance is key.
3. If You Can’t Say Anything Nice.
As my mum always told me “If you can’t say anything nice, don’t speak.” It is so true. Waking up grumpy and snappy is not someone else’s fault. Being in lockdown may mean you wake up moody as the person you are stuck with has betrayed you or made you feel angry. You can’t change them, but you can change how you deal. You don’t have to sink or let their actions change you into a passive-aggressive nightmare. Keep calm, take deep breaths and focus your mind on important things in the day. Don’t let negativity get an advantage. If it surfaces, keep it zipped. You do not need to say anything – it will only make everyone’s situation worse.
4.Think of Ways to Help
I don’t mean start a campaign or cook for the street. However, there are little things you can do. Perhaps pick a paper up and deliver it to a neighbour or relative who is isolating. Buy someone some flowers and make their day. Ask people if they are okay. Make someone a card and post it. All of these things go a long way – and definitely make you feel like a nicer person.
5.Listen and Give Time
Even in a lockdown, we are still consumed with ourselves. Just giving someone that bit of time, listening to them will help so much. Take an extra half hour to read more to your child at bedtime or give your family member a call and let them know you are thinking of them.
6. Question Yourself
It’s time to be brutally honest with yourself. Think about ways you feel you could improve yourself. Maybe be kinder or more thoughtful. Or think of the things that make others dislike you. Even if you are unfairly judged, get over it and work out what causes people to think a certain way in the first place. Then try to take steps to change this, so people can view you in the way you feel you deserve.
For more advice read, “How to Deal With Unwanted Family Situations at Christmas.”