Ever wonder how to teach good behavior to your child? How to instill kindness and compassion? How to raise a genuinely good person? Do you ever think about how you behave when nobody is looking? I never really did. But then I started noticing the people I love when no one was looking.
You see we live in a world where everyone posts everything they do to social media. It’s normal. I’ve seen people, literally, post every single thing they did throughout the day and where they were; even if that included a bath, a workout, crying, drinking coffee or just sitting around doing nothing. Imagine if they did something noteworthy, then they post in triplicate.
The voyeur in me kind of likes it. But the normal me thinks it’s kind of creepy. The mom in me thinks it’s absolutely insane. I’m convinced foursquare and any other geotagging apps are made by pedophiles and stalkers with the sole purpose of snatching women and children. That would be the overly protective helicopter mom in me, speaking just now.
No, what I am talking about has nothing to do with social media, who is watching or anyone else. What I’m talking about has everything to do with good home training, manners, kindness and being a general, good and thoughtful person. Anyone can pretend to be generous and good for a second in a selfie but what are they doing when no one is watching?
I’m not a stalker but I do play one to my children and occasionally my husband. Wait, that sounded way creepier than I am. What I mean is I notice them when they think I’m not paying attention.
For example, my big girl goes out of her way to open doors for the elderly, help children and smile at strangers. My little one goes out of her way to pay everyone she meets a sincere compliment. She did it once, saw the smile and she does it constantly now. Ask any person, adult or child she has ever met. She also runs to help our elderly neighbors get their groceries in the house. And my husband, the Big Guy, he sneaks off when we are at restaurants and takes food to the homeless outside.
For years, teachers and parents would tell me how “kind, sweet” my children were and I shook it off as that’s what people say. That’s what you’re supposed to say. But, now I see it and they’ve made me aware that everything we do should be because we want to treat others in the world as we would like to be treated, then the world would be a kinder, better place.
It’s made me think, how do I behave when no one is watching? Am I the same as when I am consciously aware that someone is watching? I’m a mother, so someone is always watching but I asked myself, would I still do the things I do and say the things I say if no one was watching?
In a world where someone is almost certainly always watching, do you thoughtfully move through the world? Are you good because its the right thing to do, because you know someone might be watching or do you just not care and why or why not?