Sunday we drove into Manhattan to walk around the Crafts Show at Lincoln Center. By the time we’d seen half the show it was 2 pm. Since we hadn’t had lunch we walked across the street to P.J. Clarke’s for a salad.
As we were leaving after lunch we happened to look up and high on the wall in front of us hung a sign which read “Everyday is a struggle so we must be kind to one another.” It left me thinking about how often people forget that.
I thought about my last post, inspired by the Anthony Weiner story that has been all over the news and the ways different people commented on it. Of course his behavior was extremely immature, out of control and undignified. It instantly became a massive distraction, surely caused enormous pain for those close to him and left his political career in apparent shambles. But with no personal knowledge about him I can only speculate about his underlying issues and the pain and suffering he now lives with.
The main point I want to make is while listening to the many commenting about Weiner, how quickly the majority of them were ready with harsh judgment. People did comment about how he hurt his wife, but I heard almost no empathy for Weiner himself.
Whether one agrees he should resign immediately or that as long as he is doing his job, his personal mistakes are not just cause to force him from office is not my point. Many others throughout history, in positions of high responsibility including Presidents of The United States have engaged in immature, irresponsible and emotionally unhealthy behaviors.
I know of no “perfect” human beings and life is challenging for all of us. And yet often it takes serious emotional pain and suffering before people stop, really pay attention and seek help with their psychological, emotional and interpersonal lives. One can only speculate – how many are unkind toward others, especially when hurt, challenged, disrespected or they feel in anyway threatened?
So I thought the sentiments expressed on that sign — “Everyday is a struggle so we must be kind to one another” were worth consideration. Since everyday many of us are faced with some of life’s challenges, I think everyone of us, regardless of position, would do well to remember to be kind and respectful to each other – everyday!
I agree with half of the sign – We must be kind to each other. I think we each have the ability to create struggle-free days. Sure, some days are tougher than others, but doesn’t our attitude about events we encounter figure heavily in how they affect how we feel and what we do in response? Starting each day with “Every day is a struggle” as a mantra will certainly prepare you for any and all the bad stuff that might come down the track, be it can also become a self-fulfilling – and self-defeating – prophecy.
I also think the most important part of that mantra is being kind to one another – everyday – regardless of circumstances.
It was primarily that aspect of this sign that caught my attention.
However, most people do have aspects of life they struggle with nearly every day. It may appear in various forms and occupy more or less conscious thinking on different days. Some present us with career challenges. Other times it’s finances or physical health that requires our attention. And from my perspective, taking care of our psychological/emotional health and relationships; marital, parental, familial, friendships etc. is an everyday responsibility that often requires at some struggle with our own thinking before an acceptable solution is achieved.
Everyday, there are decisions to be made. Some barely require a moments thought – decaf or regular, orange or grapefruit juice, cereal, eggs, yogurt. But as the day progresses things typically become more complex — decisions frequently include how our choices impact others. Considering others always connects us to the core of the relationship we have with ourselves and taking care of that requires discipline courage and struggle.
The words on that sign resonated for me because from my vantage point, we need to show up in the difficult, challenging moments of struggle with self/others with a positive attitude, courageously doing so to the best of our ability — with humility, dignity, integrity — operating with respect and kindness — toward both ourselves and others!
Thanks for your comment. We are in complete agreement about the importance of a positive attitude and the only responsible way to behave toward others is with kindness!