Does anyone want their legacy be to leaving their corner of the world worse off because of their presence? Perhaps some of us may believe that this will inevitably be our fate, particularly on a bad day. But is that ever anyone’s intention?
I’ve heard people say that when they’re in a bad mood, they want everyone to feel it. I guess this is the ultimate misery-loves-company philosophy. Question to those of you who feel that way sometimes: On a good or normal day, would you say that this is the impact you’d really like to have? Especially as this mood may be more pervasive than you wish, is your goal to leave the world worse off because of your presence or bad mood?
Perhaps it is naïve of me to believe that no one wants that type of legacy, bad moments or days notwithstanding. I just don’t believe anyone, not even those you might regard as ‘evil’, strives for such a legacy.
To those who sometimes want to share their misery: consider that maybe that misery is occurring more often than intended. Given also that our energy, whether positive or negative, tends to similarly impact those around us, perhaps it is worth taking responsibility for our energy so that we do not unwittingly or regretfully detrimentally impact those around us. Remember, our energy will impact others, even if we’re trying to mask it.
I have been guilty of being simultaneously unaware of my energy and oblivious to the impact on others even when I am trying to hide it. Simply trying to control my reaction is not effective. The only thing that works is to manage my underlying emotions and mood so they don’t swing wildly out of control. It’s not an easy task, as you may know. But being aware of my tendencies and the resulting impact on others is good motivation to try to improve. For me, being aware of the types of situations that tend to upset me and knowing that my reaction is not always logical or proportional also helps me get those emotions back to baseline. Don’t get me wrong – I’m still a work in progress and always will be.
So don’t be afraid to join or be among the ranks of those that are struggling to take full responsibility for the consequences of our actions and emotions. Life isn’t supposed to be easy but there’s always room for growth and improvement. Being perfect means there’s nowhere to go but down. Instead, how about a legacy of growth and acceptance of self and others, just as we are? That would be something to be proud of.