Santa’s list of Naughty and Nice often works on small children who want to stay on Santa’s good side before the gifts arrive. Isn’t it a shame that it doesn’t work on adults?
I have such a hard time understanding mean people. Some people enjoy being mean it seems. They like to reign down their unpleasantness on anyone who gets in their way. If they have no specific target, they lash out at anyone within reach. It’s as if they have chosen to live in a world with no niceness in it. When they look for the bad, and give out anger and hatefulness, they can’t seem to see anything good at all.
What a miserable existence!
I know that according to sociology and psychological studies, those who are aggressors, unhappy, abusive, and mean to others are only acting out because others have been mean to them somewhere in their past. They blame it on their parents. They blame it on their circumstances. They blame it on anybody and everybody besides accepting accountability for their own behavior.
The biggest fault that I see in modern society is the “blame game.” If I do something wrong, it can’t possibly be my own fault. Let me find someone to point fingers at. If my kids do something wrong, it can’t be their fault. There must be someone else to blame for it besides them or me.
If our government fails, it is the people’s fault. If the people fail, it is the economy’s fault. If they economy fails, it is Wall Street’s fault. If families fail it is society’s fault. If the church fails, it’s the preacher’s fault. If student’s fail, it’s the school’s fault. On and on it goes.
These attitudes of never accepting responsibility for anything create a spirit of meanness. It is an arrogance that embraces the view that “I am right. I owe no apologies. Everyone else is wrong. If anyone disagrees with me or holds me accountable, it is okay for me to be mean to them.”
Let me tell you, I have never met a perfect person. I’ve met many who appeared to think they were, but showing through that attitude is absolute imperfection.
I am ever mean? Not on purpose. Do I make mistakes? Absolutely. Do I accept responsibility for my own messes? Certainly. Am I happy about it? Not always. Do I ever tell a lie? Not deliberately. I am only human and I’ll only be human until I die – imperfections, mistakes, and all.
Do those things put me on the naughty list? In the moment that I mess up – YES. Can I ever get back on the nice list? ABSOLUTELY. The moment I apologize, correct my mistake, take responsibility for my goof ups, and try to make things right I am right back on the nice list.
There are no perfect people in this world. Heaven help those who think they are!
I had a wait between office visits and in the time between appointments there wasn’t a whole lot to do besides be aware of the surroundings, the people, and their behavior. Many of the office staff proved to be cordial, thoughtful, and helpful. But there will always be that one unhappy waitress, pharmacy tech, cashier, secretary, sanitary engineer, nurse, or whomever, that is miserable and lashes out at every opportunity.
Doesn’t it make sense that one prerequisite for working in public ought to be that the person actually LIKES the public they are working with?
The holiday season seems to bring out the naughty and nice all around us. Nice people are nicer, more thoughtful, more helpful, and more considerate. Naughty people are more aggressive, selfish, frustrated, and unpleasant.
Tales about the Black Friday hordes are enough to make a shopper’s hair stand on ends! Is a $5 food chopper worth punching someone? Is grumbling at the store workers because there weren’t enough hot items in stock going to make them magically appear? Is cutting someone off for a parking place worth the few steps it saves getting in the stores?
The old song says, “He knows when you are sleeping. He knows when you’re awake. He knows when you’ve been bad or good, so be good for goodness sake!”
For goodness’ sake ought to be a good enough reason to behave well and to treat others well. Whether good behavior brings rewards from others or not the satisfaction of doing good ought to be a reward in itself.
It is very easy to be kind to people who are kind to us. It is not a problem to treat those well who treat us well. The trouble comes when we try to reach out to someone in a good way only to have them responds to us in a mean way.
I use to worry about the possibility in life that another person might not like me. I tried to be good all the time. I tried to be good to everyone. I went out of my way to help others. What I’ve found out over the years is that if everyone else in the whole world liked you, there would be at least one that hated you because of it. The things about a person that endear them to some are the very things that would driver other people crazy.
Even though you may not realize it, there are always people watching, always checking their lists, always measuring up the people around them to try and discover if they are naughty or nice. In this Christmas season, wouldn’t it be wonderful if everyone ended up on the “nice” list?