March 9 was international Good Deeds Day. It seems like there is a day for everything and everyone anymore.
I thought it was odd, though, that we have to have a day for “good deeds.” Don’t get me wrong, I applaud the effort and recognize that it is probably necessary. Everyone seems so quick to anger anymore. As kids we were all told that you “don’t discuss religion or politics.” Social media seems to have transformed that attitude to “only discuss religion or politics” and only do it when you are willing to criticize other people for their opinion and have no interest in trying to understand someone else’s thoughts on any given subject.
Without realizing it was a day set aside for good deeds, that day I helped a friend out with his website, supported another friend being ordained as a minister and then my wife and I saw a woman have a seizure and collapse outside a store. While my wife comforted the woman, I called 9-1-1 and got help on the way. My neighbor offered me the use of his log splitter and a couple days later he spent a couple hours in the yard with me moving logs and busting them up (thanks, Paul!).
The last thing I’m trying to do is hold myself up as a paragon of any virtue; quite the opposite, in fact. Too often I get wrapped up in my own little world and forget to even look up, much less do a good deed for anyone else. It does seem, though, we all spend more time worrying about what someone said or implied online than we do worrying about people down the street. Maybe that’s why news stories about someone paying for other diners’ meals or going out of their way to help each other are actually news stories and not just common events.
West Virginia has taken some bad hits in the national news over the last few months, not the least of which was a poll that indicated that West Virginia is the unhappiest state in the union (again). At this point, I’m fairly convinced our “leaders” don’t have a clue how to reverse these trends, even if they were to admit they were real. On the other hand, I’m confident that West Virginians know how to do it without any help from the government. Doing good deeds actually does more for the doer than the recipient.
My vote is we make West Virginia the “Good Deed” state and then we’ll see who has the highest level of overall well-being..