Last week, I talked about how ridiculously hard it is for most people to live a life of consistent positivity.
If you’re one of the many people who are currently living a life of positivity, then you probably know how hard it can be. That’s why it’s worth saying it again:
Being negative is the easy route.
The real challenge in life is finding the inner strength to be positive enough to make the world a better place, even in the face of unrelenting negativity.
Since it is a challenge, my goal is to make living a positive life as easy as humanly possible for as many people as I can reach.
Last week, I shared three simple, but very powerful tips to stay consistently positive. This week, I’m going to take it a big step further by giving you one simple rule to instantly (yes, instantly) make the world a more positive place.
Anyone can do it, you don’t need any talent/skills/connections/education/etc, and most importantly, you can apply this rule the minute you’re done reading this blog post.
Sound good? Let’s get to it.
The #1 Rule of Positivity
This might sound simple, but the easiest way to make this world a better place is to commit to leaving everything better than how you found it.
Can you imagine how quickly the world would positively change if everyone committed to doing this everyday, in every interaction?
I believe that it’s possible.
The good news is that this doesn’t mean starting a worldwide non-profit organization, finding cures for previously incurable diseases, or finally solving that pesky world peace issue.
All that it takes is doing something to leave everything better than how you found it. It doesn’t matter how small the act is either, the only thing that matters is that you’re doing something.
Here are a few of literally millions of potential examples:
- Pick up a piece of litter and put it in the trash.
- If you see a car parked at an expired meter, put some spare change in it.
- Whenever you’re at a grocery store, Starbucks, a restaurant, (etc.) take a minute to sincerely thank the person who is serving you.
- Smile at a stranger.
- Refill the coffee pot and/or the copier at work when they’re empty.
- Refuse the urge to engage in spreading gossip, mean-spiritedness, and other mindless negativity.
- Commit a random act of kindness.
- Consistently say “please,” “thank you,” and “excuse me,” and never be one of those people who allows their moods to determine their manners.
- Help someone who needs your help.
You don’t have to wait for the fictional “someone else” to do any of these things. The truth is that you’re very capable of doing all of those things right now.
As a reminder of that fact, I use this as my daily self-imposed challenge:
No matter what, I will leave everything that I touch and every person I meet a little better than I how I found them.
It doesn’t have to be difficult, and like I said earlier, it’s something that anyone can do.
So, are you up for the challenge?
Insanity in Action
Unfortunately, there may be someone reading this who is thinking:
“Yeah, this sounds cute and all, but this world is so hopelessly effed up that there’s nothing that I can do to make it better.”
If you’re one of those people, I cannot even express how wrong you are. You can do something, and this brilliant quote from Helen Keller says it so much better than I ever could.
I am only one, but I still am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something; and because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do something that I can do.” -Helen Keller
We can’t let the enormity of the task to stop us from doing whatever we can do.
Tell me if any of the following quotes makes sense to you:
“Ugh, I have so much weight to lose. There’s no way that I’m ever going to get to my ideal weight, so I might as well shove 3 Big Macs in my face for lunch.”
“I am in so much debt right now and I’m never going to dig out of this hole, so I might as well put that 60-inch HDTV that I’ve always wanted (but don’t need) on my credit card.”
“This world is such a mess and there’s no way that it’s going to get any better, so what’s the point in doing anything about it?”
All these quotes are pure insanity.
Any action that gets us closer to our goal is better than doing nothing, and it’s infinitely better than doing something that will drive us farther away from our goal.
Out of the three quotes above, it’s the third one that I’m concerned with. There is a much better way to live our lives than choosing to go down that dark road, and that’s where you come in.
I don’t need everyone to leave the world a little better than how they found it–I just need you to do it.
Yep, just you.
Like Helen Keller said, don’t refuse to do something that you can do.
The Real Legacy
Everyone loves to talk about leaving a legacy after they die, or leaving a legacy for their children long after they’re gone.
I say, screw that.
This isn’t about leaving a legacy when you leave this earth, this is about leaving a legacy whenever you leave a room.
The very real truth is that your legacy is being created today. Right now, to be specific.
Think about this–what if you committed to leaving everything that you touch a little better than how you found it?
What if you shared this simple idea with 10 people who committed to do the same thing?
That is exactly how we’ll positively change the world, and there’s no one alive who can convince me that it can’t be done. It all starts with one person simply committing to leave the world a little better than he/she found it.
You know that I’m “all in” when it comes to this challenge, and I sincerely hope that you are too.
All that we have to do is commit to leaving every situation and every person we meet a little better than how we found them.
The world needs us, and whether we’re ready or not, our legacies are being written right now at this very moment.
The only question is: What will it be?
How are you leaving the world a little better than how you found it? Is this something that you’re currently doing right now? Jump into the comments below and make your voice heard!