Saturday, September 27, 2008

The Preciousness of People!

I wanted my children to appreciate the preciousness of people.  When we'd see people walking, I would have my children "make up" stories about people and their families, and what they were doing.

I was careful to show respect for others.  When an elderly woman was driving too slowly, I'd say, "Look at that cute grandma probably facing her fears on the road to go see her grandchildren!" and excuse people's errant driving behavior.  By my actions, I instilled in my children that each person, whether they were driving or doing right or wrong, did not deserve my hostility and could not turn me into a hostile person.

It was interesting but when I was in Hong Kong recently, I was very impressed by how respectful people were to each other.  Even when I would see many oriental people wearing face masks in the airport and public places, I never realized that it was out of consideration for others -- when people had a cold or cough or were sick they were mindful enough of others to wear a mask so as to not pass germs.  When I was in Hong Kong I did not see ONE -- NOT ONE -- piece of gum, paper, garbage, or graffiti, nor did I see ONE person having to clean up after other people!  

I think we need to continue to train our children to respect others.  This is done in a multitude of ways.  Train them to understand that no one should pick up after us.   If they try clothes on, to put them away so no one has to pick up after them.  To respect others' property and leave others' things alone.  To push their chairs in.  To respect wait staff and tip them appropriately. To show kindnesses to people, whether they are serving YOU or you are serving THEM.  

Challenge:  Work on teaching your children the preciousness of people this week.  Teach them to respect others, and to be kind to others.  Teach them to value people regardless of their station in life or their attitude back.  Teach them to make a difference when they know others may be going through hard times.

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