72 Secrets to Happiness
Secret 21 Plague


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This is a particularly trouble some secret because it seems so far beyond our personal control and begs for a higher source to blame.  How can one person possibly be the cause of a plague?  The answer is this, by being part of the herd that stampedes rather than the Cowboy that sings a calming song.

By being indifferent to the suffering of others we buy products that kill in other nations, or cloths that create slavery in other places.  By cheating, even in the smallest way just because we can get away with it.

Consider this, you decide to speed up a little so the person just entering the cross walk and two lanes away will not cause you to have to stop.  You know there is a law saying to stop, but it is completely safe because the person crossing will be 20 feet from your lane when you go past them, and in no danger.  But now say a person behind you is a bit distracted and really only looking at his following distance so as not to collide with you.  This person does not see the crossers and is not alerted to them by your stopping and ends up killing the pedestrian.

Although I did not tell the story correctly, the point was you though about yourself not the safety of the pedestrian and not about the consequences.  Had you stopped the car behind you would have stopped as well.  Often even cars coming the other way will see you stop and look to see why.  This alerts others and creates a safer environment for everyone.

Another story; you do not want your kids to cures at school because they get in trouble and could even be kicked out, you swear all the time at work but not at home in front of the kids.  Guess what, one day something happens and you let out a really bad word by impulse in front of your 4 year old and he repeats it at school.  If you did not swear all the time when you were not at home, then you would not have done it in front of your 4 year old.

I know more than anyone that we cannot be perfect all the time and we should go easy on ourselves for being human, but on the other hand we should be on the look out for cheating, indifference, and bad behavior because it not only hurts us but those around us.  Could you really wear a tennis shoe if you knew the 6 year old in China that made it on his 16 hour work day for $2 a week.

Just think of how our country would be different if we all were more responsible and worked even a little for the common good.  It is a cop out to say, well nobody else is going to do it so neither will I.  Even worse, is the effect that not taking responsibility has on your personal happiness and sense of well being.

You cannot become a better person over night because it is not possible and your certain failure may prevent you from any improvements at all.  Just try to be a little better every day in some small way or take on some small responsibility for your actions and you will see your self esteem and happiness level begin to rise.
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