I recently read an article called “4 Completely Unselfish Things You Can Do Today” (link here).
“Most to-do lists detail what we need to do. By their nature, to-do lists are self-focused. This is a different kind of list; here are four things you should do today for other people…”, it says.
While the article seems to be more business-focused, it was such a good challenge. Especially for me. Currently – and for the first time in my adult life – I’m living by myself. Both of my boys have summer jobs out-of-town, so I have a lot of time to myself. While it’s a little strange and I miss a full house, the solitude has provided a unique opportunity to relax and exhale.
However, while I adjust to living all by myself, I don’t want life to become all about myself. Sometimes when people live by themselves, without even realizing it, they don’t think about anyone other than themselves. I don’t want to be that person. So I started my own list of things to bring the focus to others:
– Send hand-written letters to friends and loved ones.
– Extend a sincere compliment to someone I don’t particularly like.
– Be present.
– Actively listen.
– Ask more questions.
– Think before speaking, eliminate gossip/negative comments about people.
– Donate clothes.
– Extend the benefit of the doubt, assume the good in people.
– Be patient.
– Give when someone is in need.
– Remind people of their value.
There are obviously a lot more things to do. This is just a start. And I have all summer to develop it.
(I included the Seeds of Happiness photo (shown above) because their entire business model is rooted in thinking of others. They are the embodiment of the ideal life and work goals.)