As much as is may be cool to mock Oprah in some quarters, I often think she has some really interesting things to say (I’m a fan :)). My friend Naomi and I enjoyed her show and even both have the 20th anniversary DVD (thanks again, Nai!). I’ve been thinking about this quote a lot recently, as my class and I have been chatting about friendship and teamwork and being helpful and supportive of others. I shared this quote with the boys last Friday and was really impressed with their take on it.
I think it’s so important to have people in your life who lift you up and encourage you, and really feel lucky to have lots of friends who do. It takes effort (as does everything good!) to help and support and give people a chance, but it’s so good for you! I love the feeling I get from deploying a heartfelt compliment, celebrating with a friend or giving attention to the little things my friends do which make my world a sunnier place. I also love when someone takes the time to extend a kindness my way. Words are definitely one of my love languages!
It often feels like being kind also sits at odds with a lot of what the media does (and encourages us to do) – they always seem to be tearing someone down, bashing them, willing them to fail. It makes me sad to see that sometimes. as much as I may not care for someone, it can really get me down when the press go at them. Of course, when someone’s actually done wrong (lying, hurting people etc.) I understand and think the press does have a duty to state facts and draw judgement….but to me the papers often seem full of just nastiness about peoples’ lives (This person’s put on weight! This actress has a nanny! This man bought something cheap, not designer!). This may be why I avoid papers much of the time. They seem to want us to think that by tearing someone else down we build ourselves up, but heaven knows that never works. To quote Mean Girls:
“Calling someone fat won’t make you any skinner. Calling someone stupid
doesn’t make you any smarter. Ruining someone’s life won’t make yours
any better. The only thing that you can do in life is solve the problem
that’s in front of you.”
I’m going to continue to try to lift up others with my words and deeds. To encourage. To celebrate. To gossip less and listen more. I’m going to make sure my friends and family and pupils know how awesome and special they are. Because I think this stuff matters.