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Rangie's avatar

If you do at least one good deed everyday, do you think it will change your life?

Asked by Rangie (3640 points ) March 20th, 2010

Will doing at least one good deed a day change your life, in respect to your attitude, compassion, morals, ethics, priorities, joy and peace in your life etc.? If so, how does it change it.

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44 Answers

PandoraBoxx's avatar

It does, but only if you do it, and never talk about it.

Rangie's avatar

@PandoraBoxx , I gather you don’t want to talk about it, but do you try to do that everyday? If how does it make you feel better. I have not tried it, but I think I will.

Just_Justine's avatar

Well belief systems aside i.e. good or bad karma, if it makes you feel good, you will generally feel better about yourself and life and it will snowball from there. Random acts of kindness have a great physical effect on my body which lasts quite a long time. I feel uplifted and happy.

Life also has a “weird inexplicable flow to it. I once loaned someone money (for e.g.) which I could not afford to do. I was stone broke. It was R1000.00. The person never paid me back, and I never have discussed it with her at all. But about a month after this, a friend phoned me (another one) and said “I have just realized I owe you R1 400.00.” I was dumbfounded I certainly was not aware she owed me money, but she insisted. I just find life odd that way. What I give out I do get back from various sources. Whether I wanted it back or not. Both good or bad.

The world would certainly be a better place for it. If we all got into the “act”!!

PandoraBoxx's avatar

It does. It doesn’t have to be hard, or big. Start by being observant, and doing small things. “Good deed” and “considerate” are often very similar. It gets to be fun.

There is only so much you can control and influence, and that’s what’s immediately around you.

MacBean's avatar

For me, it allows me to tell myself that I’m a good person when others put me down and make me feel like a useless loser or a disgusting freak.

j0ey's avatar

I think that many people leave positive thoughts about others inside their heads too often.. I mean what good does you just milling around in your brain.

If you think the check out chicks eyes are beautiful, tell her.

If you like a guys fashion sense, compliment him on it.

If you admire the intelligence of someone’s comment in a class discussion, say it.

I think even if you just did this once a day, thus making someone feel a little better about themselves and putting a smile on their face, it would make you feel better.
After all, smiles are contagious…if you give one to someone, you’ll catch it back.

Rangie's avatar

@Just_Justine , That was so well stated I can’t wait until tomorrow and get started. Oh dear, I am having a yard sale, I will probably give everything away. hehe
Seriously, I had a person do a good deed for me when I was just 14 years old. I worked all summer packing peaches to earn money for school clothes.
I had nearly $500 in my little leather purse. My sister and I stopped first at the soda fountain for a root beer float. I set my purse on the little shelf below the counter. When we got up to leave I forgot my purse. We went about our shopping, but stopped short when I found something I wanted to buy, after we went in and out of many stores. I went to pay and realized I didn’t have my purse full of cash. We back tracked and found ourselves where we started. I had lost all hope by then, but I asked the waitress anyway. Surprise, someone turned it in with all of the cash inside. I have tried to figure out ways to give back to someone, anyone. Throughout the years since, I have found 2 wallets, one with about enough cash to have been someone’s weekly wages. My husband and I spent the better part of an hour looking for the owner in the shopping center. Yes, we found the owner, a young man with a wife and baby. That was great. I got such a high from that day, that I felt like I was floating rather than walking. I hope he was able to do something for someone else.
The other one was actually a purse left in a shopping cart. We sat in the parking lot for about 2 hours waiting for someone that appeared to be looking for something. Low and behold she finally showed up. We asked her if she lost her purse and she said yes, described it and we gave it to her in tack. I have no idea how much money was in there, because we found no reason to look yet.
So I guess I just keep my eyes and ears open and jump in when I can. Right?

shpadoinkle_sue's avatar

I try to. My most frequently used one is to let someone merge into traffic when everyone else is being a jerk.

j0ey's avatar

@py_sue I love people like you :)...thank you

Vunessuh's avatar

Yes, but it’s best to do good deeds because you want to. Not because you feel like you have to.

Rangie's avatar

@MacBean , Sorry you allow other to make you feel like a usless looser. Maybe you should not allow them to make you feel that way. Just because some says something to put you down, doesn’t make it so. They are the one with the issue not you. Remember, most all of time, he who speaks last, looses. Now you know what they are thinking, and they only can wonder what you are thinking, especially if you toss them a small smile before you walk away.

Rangie's avatar

@Vunessuh , If you have to, is it still considered a good deed? I do agree with you on the want to thing. This could get really interesting and fun. Not only will I keep my eyes open for opportunity, but I think I will create some things I can do unexpectedly for someone. And if I could do it without them knowing it like Pandoraboxx said, it be even better. any suggestions?

Rangie's avatar

@j0ey , have you actually had someone let you in line when nobody else would? Was it contagious and did you let someone in as a result of that?

partyparty's avatar

If you are doing good deeds to help someone, rather than seeking praise and admiration for yourself, then I am sure you are already a caring person.
It won’t change your life because your compassion is within you already/

Rangie's avatar

@partyparty , Well if it won’t change my life for the better, maybe it will change someone life, and then someone else. If I have that compassion and don’t use it for a good purpose, then it is all for not, wasted. Right?

Vunessuh's avatar

@Rangie Yes, it’s still considered a good deed. I wouldn’t necessarily always be looking for things to do for people. You can come off to people as if you’re just trying to impress them or that you’re too prideful in the good things you do. I think that may be what @PandoraBoxx was getting at. Do your deed, but don’t brag about it later.
It’s nice to do little, unexpected things for people, but let those opportunities come naturally. Don’t force them. If you do, you’ll burn yourself out and become one of those people-pleasers. People will get the impression that you’re trying too hard to get everyone to like you and a lot of people find insincerity in that.
Be observant toward the people you care about and their needs and if you can fulfill something for them, then do it, but don’t force it.

partyparty's avatar

@Rangie If you are compassionate already, then the good deeds would come naturally, without having to try hard.

Rangie's avatar

@Vunessuh Yes, I hadn’t thought of that. Definitely not looking to impress anyone. I never have and never will. Don’t have to worry about bragging, isn’t my style. I would rather do things without a fuss. Never felt the need to brag. But I have known people that do. When they do brag, what they have done looses it’s importance to me. I just want to say yea, yea. tell someone who cares.
You know it is funny, my sister said the other day she spent more time in high school trying to make people like her than she did on just about anything else. I told her I had no idea she did that and I wanted to know why. I never really thought about whether someone liked me or not. Except my boyfriends of course. I am who I am, we connect or we don’t. I love my friends, some are actually better friends than a few of my sisters.

Just_Justine's avatar

@Rangie once you become “aware” just listen to your heart. It will tell you when :)

Rangie's avatar

Thank you everybody for your insight. I am not young like all of you that stay up all night. I am so late for be it isn’t even funny. I will try to catch up tomorrow, if I get out of bed that is. You all have given me things to think about. Than you again. good night, see you tomorrow

kess's avatar

Doing good deeds is good, but without the proper understanding can be used for evil.

Our ego causes us to do good in the sight of men for the praise of men, and because of that, they actually are counted as evil.

The prime example are those who are compelled to do “good works” by their religion as they do their religious rules.

Even focussing on one act of kindness a day is bordering on being religious duty,

But if all good works springs from a pure heart, then life itself becomes the religion as was the original intention.

Purity of heart is fostered by the seeking after the subtle impression of Truth within in all things.

With that mindset the good will be in us at all times in all things, and opinions of men matter little.

MacBean's avatar

@Rangie: I do try not to let it get to me, and most of the time I’m pretty successful. But a person can only hear something so many times before they start to believe it, or at least wonder if it might be true.

meagan's avatar

No. It won’t. Just ask me! I’m a very kind, giving, compassionate person. Every day I help my friends with either advice or some kind of “let me come over and help you pack,” etc.

People don’t care. I think about this a lot. No one knows what humility and graciousness is anymore. People are greedy and don’t appreciate it when someone goes out of their way for you. It annoys the crap out of me, but I continue to go out of my way for people every day and offer a helping hand.

And still I sit here alone the same. Except a little more jaded, I believe.

Bagardbilla's avatar

The sweet smell always stays in the hand that gave the rose…
so… Yes.

@meagan maybe you need new friends.
ones who are truly your Friends and not a bunch of Muchers!

ucme's avatar

Yay do I get a badge?

janbb's avatar

@meagan Oy, so bitter! Are you really trying to help people in ways they want help or are you possibly imposing yourself on them? Not saying that you are, but you might want to look at why you are trying to help and why they are rejecting your help.

meagan's avatar

@janbb This might be news to you, but America has raised a new generation of young adults that can’t do anything themselves. I’m constantly holding someone’s hand.

How would I be imposing myself on them by counseling them during hard times? No one is rejecting my help.

Sorry, not to sound defensive. Its just tiring to always help others without them helping back. x_x

janbb's avatar

Oh – I had the impression that people weren’t really accepting your help. So they are but just not appreciating it enough? You might want to examine what you are getting out of doing it then, and think about whether it’s time for new friends. I would try not to let it get you jaded or generalize about all young adults from your friends.

Trillian's avatar

I try to live my life according to this, I let my mouth get out of hand sometimes, but everything in that boook rings beautiful and true for me. I hope one day to have a partner who feels the same.

phillis's avatar

There are benefits that I had not counted on when I first took this on as a way of life. My depression and bipolar disorder episodes were less severe, some days by as much as 15%. I became more forgiving of people’s faults, because my perspectives had changed. I was inadvertantly beginning to look for the good in people, which became more and more apparent, the further down the path I went.

As it turned out, when you live for others as well as yourself, you begin to see that most trangressions of other people aren’t due to malice, but to being human. That made thier transgressions more tolerable to the point that most of them didn’t even bother me anymore. Once I understood that the bad things were due to human frailty , it opened the door to being more appreciative to the good things they were doing to me. In fact, it flung the doors wide open.

Trillian's avatar

Boook. What a doofus. I apologize to everyone.

j0ey's avatar

@Rangie….I guess so, I let others in…I’m not sure if I do this because someone has let me in…but it could have something to do with it.

Trillian's avatar

@Rangie What @PandoraBoxx meant, IMO, was that you shouldn’t do good things for recognition. I don’t know if you read the link, but one of the things he said is “There are those who give little of the much which they have—and they give it for recognition and their hidden desire makes their gifts unwholesome.” Then she said to be observant, which he also covers: “It is well to give when asked, but it is better to give unasked, through understanding;” That is what sums it up for me. Don’t wait to be asked. Look and see what the need is and answer it. He says something like “Why should a person have to humble himself to you? Who the hell are you anyway? Not in those words, but the point is that a person should not have to beg for what you have to offer.
Now, to state both sides, I’ll reference Jesus from the books of Matthew, Mark, and John. Judas was whining because Mary anointed Jesus with some expensive oil that Judas could have been better sold and the proceeds given to the poor. Jesus told him that there were always going to be poor people, but that he wasn’t going to be around forever. So all things should be taken in context. But in general, give, do, act. But do it quietly without thought of recognition, thanks or gratitude.

neverawake's avatar

Not if you get hit by a car. Then those good deeds that you did wouldn’t even matter because your life would be over.

susanc's avatar

Yes, if you do a good deed every day, you will improve your own life.
Perhaps even more wonderful, once you’ve integrated the habit of “one good deed per day”, would be to do good deeds whenever opportunites arise.

Bluefreedom's avatar

I’d like to think it will although I can’t prove it. It does feel good, though, to do good things and that’s always a positive aspect as it will benefit your self-esteem and happiness and well being.

YoH's avatar

It’s an amazing habit to live life with,and it’s contagious. Someone told me as a child,do something kind everyday but don’t tell. It doesn’t count if you tell. I must have believed it :)

wundayatta's avatar

Of course it changes your life. Especially if you are doing no good deeds in a day prior to that. Personally, I’d like to think that every deed is a chance to do a good deed. So why stop at one?

Rangie's avatar

I am 67 years old now and I have 3 sisters. I am #3 in the line. My father taught all of us that there wasn’t anything we couldn’t do. I grew up believing that, so I was never afraid to try anything. Consequently, I not only learned from my father, but I jumped right in and worked along side of my husband. He is a contractor. We built a house, mostly just the two of us. I plowed snow right along side of him. I learned how to run a backhoe. I dug trenches, stuck pipe, and many other things. I felt quite confident that my father was right. Maybe I couldn’t do things as well or sometimes better than I expected, but it didn’t stop me. Apparently, my sisters didn’t learn that, because when ever they and their husbands need to do things that would require them to hire a contractor they called us. It got so frequent that we weren’t getting our own things done. But, in the past few years I began to say no, my husband has too many things to do. They actually would get angry and not talk to us for a while, or until they needed more help. As it stands now one sister won’t speak to us and hasn’t for 2 years. I didn’t want anything in return, but I didn’t want anger from them when we were unable to help either. We enjoyed helping them and even offered many times. This is the sister I helped after 3 divorces. But due to inappropriate behavior in my home with a married man, I ask her stop or leave. She didn’t stop, causing me to tell her to leave. She left angry and convinced my other 2 sisters not to speak to us either. Don’t know what she told them, but their true character or lack of came through quite clearly. Can’t help myself, I love to help and see the smile. Even that is somewhat selfish, because I am getting something out of it as well. I hope that isn’t what motivates me.

Rangie's avatar

@janbb , I don’t think Meagan was saying that she was being rejected. I believe she was saying that they do not appreciate her help. Basically they are using her, and I know just how she feels. These are abusive people in the worst way. They smile to your face when you are doing something for them, and kick you in the A—when you are not.

12_func_multi_tool's avatar

Just one step ahead of fate, is what it amounts to.

mollypop51797's avatar

I thinks that it also depends on how much self discipline you have. I mean, I guess it can make you better. By doing good actions, hopefully it can become a habit, and you won’t think to do whatever you committed yourself to doing everyday. But if you want to do something good everyday, I guess you have to think about how “good” you want to be.

YARNLADY's avatar

I pretty much already do that, so it wouldn’t change anything.

Rangie's avatar

It sounds like there are a lot of really nice folks out there. I have really enjoyed reading all of the remarks, Thank all of you that participated.

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