How to improve the world

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Traffic was one-half inch shy of complete gridlock. The rain had wreaked havoc on my commute, and I was going to be at least 30 minutes late getting home. I couldn't have been more annoyed.

So annoyed, in fact, that I started talking to myself (and by "myself" I mean all of the cars around me).

"Speed up!" "Oh please, please move over!""Get Out of My Way!!"

I remember thinking, "why is the whole world in my way??!"

The crawl was so slow, I eventually lost the energy necessary to maintain my anger. In fact, I had enough time to see how I had turned crazy in the space of an hour and a half.  I also realized I had spent the day entirely consumed with meeting my needs.

Was I getting what I wanted from my kids? colleagues? friends? Were my expectations being met by strangers and friends alike? How could ______(fill in the blank) benefit me? Why do traffic patterns conspire against me?

I - MY - ME  - I couldn't recall any significant departure from the habit of evaluating everything from this self-involved lens. No wonder I was grumpy.

Self-centeredness is never ultimately satisfying.

My life will not be measured by what I keep, but by what I give away, by how well I serve others.

On traffic jam day, I wasn't measuring up. Sure, I believe in helping others, in making the world a better place, but what had I DONE to act upon my beliefs?

Ultimately, that's the rub.  What do I DO with my beliefs?

If I want the world to be better today, it's not enough to just HOPE, to have an idea in my head - I need to act. I need to choose patience. I need to encourage. I need to set aside "me first" and think "you first."

I need to DO stuff. We all need to DO stuff.

What will you DO today?