Doing Good Will Make You Feel Good!

4 Jan

I guess the essence of me is to try to make the right choice.  Doing good things for others makes me feel good.  If I am in the grocery store and someone needs a bit more money, I always offer.  When someone is having a bad day, I try to think of something to cheer her/him up.  I am genetically disposed to be happy and help others.  It comes from my parents.

My Dad loved people.  He was president of his synagogue for 11 years.  Anyone who knows synagogues boards, knows it takes a strong, yet kind person to navigate this job.  But Dad loved to schmooze….talk to people about anything.  When he spoke to you, he gave you his undivided attention.  He made people feel good and loved.  Not saying he did not have a temper and could get angry.  But am saying that his overall actions were ones to help others and chat.  He loved to chat.

My Mom was the kindest person ever.  There is nothing else to say.  She opened her home and her heart to many.  For my sister’s friends it is her comment to a friend of theirs who arrived at our home late at night, waking my mom from a sleep.  My Mother’s comment….”Victor, are you hungry.”  Because anyone coming into the house had to be fed, no matter the time or reason.  My Mom possessed the ability to be calm and centered.

She and my Dad were intertwined and committed in their efforts to be good people, to help others and do good in the world.  Being a mensch, a good person; being a “gutah neshuma,” a good soul, was important.

They passed this belief on to their children and grandchildren. 

I remember stories about my Mom’s parents. They owned a kosher bakery during the Great Depression.  My Mom would talk about how my grandparents gave people food on credit.  Many years later, people would come to the bakery to pay back because my grandparents had provided them in those tough times.

So doing good things for people, speaking to people, chatting, feeding, helping and just being kind, is what I was taught to do.

Now I am not saying I don’t have a temper and I don’t get angry.  I am my father’s daughter, and my mother’s daughter.  If I see injustice, I get angry.  If I see someone hurting another person, I get angry.  I try not to have useless anger, for me the best thing to do is to do something.  And I try.

The way I try is to attempt the make the world a better place.  For many years, when my children were young, I was a PTA/classroom Mom.  Field trips, parties…I was there.   I served as a PTA president and on the boards of all their school’s PTA/PTO.  I served on standing committees of the school board, providing my input on important issues. 

As my children aged, my volunteering grew.  My son wanted to volunteer at the local animal shelter, Wayside Waifs.  For the first two years, I had to go with him.  It was a great time to bond and a great place to help.  My daughter and I volunteered together for NCJW and at our synagogue.

All the helping and volunteering made me feel so much better. Helping others brings you out of yourself.  I highly recommend it to all.  Feeling badly?  Find someone to help.  There are so many in need.

I have tried to do one good thing every day of my life.  Sometimes it is volunteering for an organization.  Sometimes it is donating money for a good cause.  Sometimes it is organizing a program.  If a neighbor or a friend needs help, I am there. (Just don’t ask me to cook for you.  That is not something I do well.)   It makes me feel so good to help someone else.

I read somewhere that it takes more muscles to frown than to smile. And if you smile, you actually feel better.  So to all I say, doing something nice is like smiling, when you do it, you will feel so much better.

Have a great day!

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