Adventures in Imperfection

If We Could See Inside Others’ Hearts – #1000Speak

Did you hear that?

That’s the drums beating in unison with their battle-cry for compassion.

#1000Speak

Today’s Feature: Over a month ago, a friend of mine asked me to join in the February 20 #1000Speak. It’s where thousands of writers, bloggers, and dedicated hearts join together to speak about compassion.

Today’s Challenge: You don’t need grand gestures or a huge bank account to be compassionate. This is about seeing others and meeting them where they are without judgment or prejudice. I have a few challenges for you today – each task is more difficult than the one before:

Easy:

  • Look for the #1000Speak hashtag on your favorite social media sites. Read their words, practice what is preached. Write a few of your own.
  • Read posts from three of my bloggy friends:
    • Lizzi (our fearless leader and moderator)
    • Karen (a heart-teller from way back)
    • Dani (one of the kindest, more generous women I know)

A little more effort:

  • Reach for that somebody you love who might be drowning behind that glorious smile. The sweet friend who is always quick with a kind word for you, but delivers a beat-down on his or herself the moment they are faced with self-doubt.
  • Notice the person who is doing the very best he/she can but handling things differently than you would. They don’t need our judgment – just our understanding.

Most difficult:

  • Now, do what’s hard. It’s easy to be kind when you’re in a good mood or with somebody you love. Consider your inconsiderate acquaintance, the less-than-kind co-worker, the rude gestures of a fellow commuter or grocery store cashier….even consider your enemies. See them. Really see them. Their scowl is less about you and more about the internal battles they are waging. See their hearts, offer genuine kindness, send a silent prayer – even if that’s the only thing you do.

When I think of compassion, my mind goes to Mother Teresa and the words written on a wall in a home for children in Calcutta, India.

People are often unreasonable, irrational, and self-centered. Forgive them anyway.

If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives. Be kind anyway.

If you are successful, you will win some unfaithful friends and genuine enemies. Succeed anyway.

If you are honest and sincere, people may deceive you. Be honest and sincere anyway.

What you spend years creating, others could destroy overnight. Create anyway.

If you find serenity and happiness, some may be jealous. Be happy anyway.

The good you do today, will often be forgotten. Do good anyway.

Give the best you have, and it will never be enough. Give your best anyway.

In the final analysis, it is between you and God. It was never between you and them anyway.

*Special thanks to the dude sitting in front of me on the airplane last night. He gave me the words for this post.

I wanted to smack him.

Had it not been for this assignment, I may not have recognized the internal hurt in the rude comments or the demons hiding behind the cruel eyes. I sent him my silent prayers and he was quiet by the end of the flight.

Compassion is contagious.

59 thoughts on “If We Could See Inside Others’ Hearts – #1000Speak

    1. Winner, winner chicken dinner!
      He was clearly upset with the poor mom who had a screaming baby on the flight. Poor babe had an ear infection (can you imagine?!) and the guy couldn’t understand why she couldn’t “shut up that kid.” He even grabbed the flight attendant a few times and told her to “do something with that kid.”
      Before you think me an angel, Susie…just know I had visions of a motherly slap and a few choice words. I silently made fun of his fancy shoes and perfectly coiffed hairdo. But today’s call for compassion was too forward in my brain. Somehow, his seat-mate and I had him laughing before the end of the flight. And I didn’t smack him πŸ™‚

      Liked by 4 people

  1. Beautiful post Michelle! I love all your suggestions. I’ve been such a angry driver lately, muttering names under my breath. It’s such a waste of energy and it’s stopping today. I’ve had time to read a few #1000Speak posts today and there’s a common theme among them that it’s the little things we can do that pack the biggest punch. Much love to you!

    Like

    1. Oh, thank you, my friend! You were on my mind the whole time I was writing…at the airport yesterday AND when I rewrote the WHOLE thing this morning. Even though, I haven’t commented yet, I read yours this morning to calm me down and get in the right frame of mind. You and I share that empathy button….as well as the name muttering habit about other drivers. It IS so the little things. I’ll be over later to give your words their proper due.
      Love you sista!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. And, you are always a bright spot in mine. This was what I was writing when you and I were texting and I was ignoring the last calls for Kansas City. YIKES!!
      So awesome to see this week…Keep Calm and Rock on πŸ™‚

      Like

  2. Mick, thank you AGAIN for the beauty of your words. I love the Cleveland Clinic videos–they are so powerful in their quiet way. Healthcare is the prime feeding ground for compassion….as well as a highly stressful environment where foul energy can reside if we are not careful to let it all go and let the light stream in.

    Great job, my sweet friend. Can’t wait to see you on the Mat again! πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I love their videos, too. You and I are both in healthcare and it’s such a blessing to see this side of it. Cleveland Clinic is one of our customers and I hope I get to meet the folks who put this together some day.
      I hope you’ve had a great week and I’m shooting on a Mat Monday very soon!! xoxoxo

      Like

    1. Oh my, this made me giggle!! Imagine if we had that little GPS voice in our heads every time we were getting ready to cross over that line into meanness.
      You are so right – viral proportions are needed more so than a little infection.
      Have a great Friday and a great weekend, my friend!!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Great post, Michelle. I love positive thoughts like yours to remind us that there is good in everyone, even that impatient scowler who seems like a jerk. I tell my kids that the people at school that act the worst are probably the ones that need their friendship most, and to not discount them. Reach out in small ways, even if it’s just with a smile. That goes a long way (as it did for you on the plane, it sounds like).

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You are so right about the kiddos (and adults!) who need it the most. Even as I was reading your book (I’m to the part where Suvi is with Mike and the baby), I thought about what would compassion look like for somebody like Mike. Now, there’s a person who needs it – but, honestly, would I be able to do it? Gut-checks are always good and that’s the part I’m really enjoying about today’s groundswell. Thank you so much for always reading my ramblings…it means the world to me.
      (Thank goodness A isn’t really gone!!!)

      Liked by 1 person

  4. What a lovely share of the 1000Speak project, and how very, very right you are that self-compassion isn’t about waiting until we feel like it, or until people deserve it…it’s about doing it ANYWAY. With kindness, because loving other people and caring about them is RIGHT.

    I’m glad you didn’t punch the plane guy. Very restrained of you πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Happy. Thrilled. Awed. Humbled. Overhwelmed. Intimidated. And awed again. It is SO MUCH BIGGER THAN I EVER THOUGHT POSSIBLE. I’ve come home from work and been on my laptop for two and a half hours and haven’t even got through all my tweets and comments yet. I am running SCARED from Facebook at the moment, and WOW!

        BUT…the connections…the unity in the desire amongst all of us here to see compassion boosted and proliferated and ACTED OUT…I love it. And I am so thrilled to pieces that so many people I admire and respect and whose words I like an enormous amount (that’s you, too, m’dear) are in this with me πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

      2. One of the most wonderful thing about this movement will be how the words will forever live. I’ve zero time to read everything and my fingers are itching to get to all of the beautiful words. The good news is that they will be waiting for me when I have the time…even if it’s not until next week. Thank you so much for providing such a warm and welcome platform. I hope you had a fun and restful weekend (didn’t I see you playing in your garden somewhere?!?!?)
        Love you Lizzi! xo

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Ahhh that was my mum’s allotment. It sunned and I dug a bit of a patch for potatoes and I listened to birds and I held worms and marvelled at the patterns of the scudding clouds against the blue, and all the silver linings. And later it hailed and I scraped ice and holed up and hid.

        It was a gorgeous weekend. I hope you had a lovely one, too.

        The links will always be there now, and NEXT MONTH a new set πŸ˜€

        Like

      4. Hi Lizzi!
        I would love to dig in the dirt with you some day πŸ™‚ The worms, birds and sky…I could see/feel/smell it all!
        I’ve been MIA this week due to day-job chaos, but just know you are always in my heart and I hope that you are having a great week!
        xoxox

        Liked by 1 person

      5. I think we would do good digging. I like digging. It calms the mind. Of course, there would have to be a thermos of tea, and maybe an apple or two. And perhaps a sticky bun for later or something.

        MIA is allowable. Glad you’re alright.

        Liked by 1 person

      6. I think we would do good digging, too!
        BTW…I read your fiction piece. Holy HECK, lady! I haven’t had time to comment over there, but I will readily admit to rushing to the end to find the “FICTION” sign. You, my love, are a lady of soooo many talents. xo

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Thanks for this Michelle…..
    what a wonderful video from the CC….
    such a thought..if we could see for just one moment into anthers heart, through their eyes, how we could change the world.
    but even though we can’t we can attempt to imagine and always, always be kind.
    We are all, in some way, uniquely qualified to help someone else. being willing to dig deep into our own compassionate selves is the first step into making this world we live in a better place.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. There are SO many times I wished for the gift of mind reading. But these words…YES

      “We are all, in some way, uniquely qualified to help someone else. being willing to dig deep into our own compassionate selves is the first step into making this world we live in a better place.”

      Over and over again…Yes! Thank you, Michele. xoxoxoxo

      Like

  6. That video should be mandatory for kids to see in elementary school, again in middle school, and every year in high school. I’ve been viewing the world that way for a while now- seeing past my own aggravations, and where I get into trouble is when I have put everyone else’s needs before my own to the point that my well becomes dry.

    I’m learning to be able to hold others in a space of compassion without leaking all of my energy to them. I think it’s like knowing that they are each in the perfect and right place in their life that God (and they, at a higher level) intended, in order to accomplish what they want and need to accomplish in this lifetime. And that no matter what things look like on the outside, they will be ok in the end. Having compassion for a person and their situation doesn’t mean you need to become involved or even interact directly. Just changing your energy around your feelings and thoughts changes everything.

    And even when I completely had no compassion yesterday for my son, who was having anxiety issues about going to school (again!), and I was forceful with him, and made him go to school, (I lost it) he came home in a cheery mood, saying it wasn’t as bad as he had anticipated.

    Beautiful, thought provoking, heart centered post.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for the insightful word, Susan. I thought of something that I should have added and you triggered it here.
      How many times (as moms) have we beat ourselves up for being too hard on our kids? Sometimes, it’s so hard to be that forceful voice and we end up beating ourselves up over every little word or exchange. Times that we need to practice SELF-compassion are often the times that it’s most difficult.
      My children save me every day…it sounds like you crystal dragon does as well. xo

      Liked by 1 person

      1. More often than not, his anxiety keeps him home, but yesterday, my hormones were very out of whack, and so was I. The lion roared, and the kid was able to (barely) make it to school, The challenge for me is to discern when to roar and when to lay back and let go. Getting lots of practice!

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    1. Hi Paul!
      I hope that you are feeling better this week. I will certainly hop over the Cordelia’s space and check you out. I have some hotel time this week and hope to get all of my reading caught up. Thank you for always being such a great friend and reader. I hop that you could feel the compassion in your neck of the woods!

      Like

    1. Me too, Katie! In fact, I have some hotel time next week and plan to read the hundreds of other entries that have crossed my desktop and twitter space. Thank you for taking the time to read and comment. xo

      Like

  7. momma -joy- loved this – really did – format he starting with the beating of the drums to the overall passion that was felt.

    and my very favorite part is this

    “See their hearts, offer genuine kindness, send a silent prayer – even if that’s the only thing you do”

    because I think we do not realize how powerful – really powerful – such small acts are –
    well said… ❀ ❀ ❀ ❀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much Yvette! And, thank you for taking the time to read and comment. This #1000Speak has truly been a wonderful ground movement of compassion over the last several days. I hope that you could feel the love in your corner of the world, too. xoxoxo

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Oh, Michelle, I just adore you. Thank you for your beautiful heart, which is open and overflowing. And thank you for including me here; I am beyond humbled.

    And since we are talking about compassion, I must thank you for the way in which you have showed it to me over the past few weeks. Knowing that you were thinking of and praying for my father was such a tremendous blessing. And finally hearing your voice?? Well, that was just the icing on the compassion cake.

    You are loved, dear friend.
    Truly, loved.

    With heart,
    Dani

    Like

    1. Hello, my dear friend!
      You have been on my mind so much lately, but you wouldn’t know that by my poor communication! Thank you for your kind words here and for being my inspiration as it relates to kindness overall. I’ve had a horrendous week of traveling and were it not for kind souls like you as well as the thousands of voices who joined to speak for compassion, I may have been a grumpy, jelly mess in an airport corner. The village gets us through.
      I have a gift of your words waiting in my inbox and I can’t wait to see the second piece you’ve written in response to #1000Speak. I’m already looking foward to it!
      Much love, Dani!

      Like

    1. So cool…I could totally say the same kind things about you, Mark!
      Hey..BTW..I went to read your post on storming the court. It’s not there! Was that a figment of my imagination!?!?!
      I hope you are having a fantastic week!

      Like

      1. Thanks for your kind words, Michelle. πŸ™‚

        FYI, I was drafting my storming the court post for Saturday and clicked publish instead of save draft in error, so had to trash it as quickly as possible because it was a title and lead sentence. It’s finished now as a draft. It’ll be great on Saturday, I think!

        Liked by 1 person

  9. I can’t wait to read it! I caught my eye because my daughter was at a KSU-KU basketball game earlier in the week and they stormed the court after KSU upset KU. I didn’t see it, but apparently, it was a big debacle…as a mama, it makes me nervous when I see kiddos flooding onto the court – don’t want my baby girl to get trampled!
    Can’t wait to read it!
    I’m slowly getting caught up. Now that I get your posts via e-mail, I can see that you are really a prolific writer. Impressive!!

    Like

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