Fostering a sense of social conscience | Dunedin | Olivia and Hayden

Maybe I am being a tad overly sensitive, But it always seems as though America ramping up into an election campaign brings the worst out in people.  To a certain extent we can usually see this mirrored in the Kiwi elections as well and it always leaves me...well, to put it mildly- baffled!

Much of my childhood was spent with my wonderful grandmother, that wickedly shrill little round woman whos voice became increasingly high-pitched as she got more and more frustrated with me.  I am not sure what it was about me that made her frustrated, probably the huge amount of questions I asked of a woman who was solidly in the school of thought that said children should be seen and not heard.  That being said I appreciate the time she put into me, answering all those questions, taking me to the library and only complaining a little when I arrived for the holidays with no less than 20 books.

It is safe to say that in no small part this woman, made me the woman I am today, and I will forever be in her debt for doing so.  I only cringe a little when I hear my voice becoming shrill, my temper getting short and my stubborn determination rising like a toxic bubble to the top. The reason is simple, along with all her doggedly determined and shrillish ways this woman I admire so much was a bloody good person, I know that if I am getting to that point its because I have thought out my position, I know how to argue it, and I will fight for it to the end.

Which brings me back to that social conscience thing I was talking about earlier, I was bought up partially on the Marae and partially in the Anglican church both of which serve as a communal centre and helped shape my morals.  So when I say the following you know that it comes from a place of community and not a political bias. Especially seeing as I no longer go to church and I only ever go to the marae if there is a tangi.

I don't understand why people are so cruel to each other. And, while a lofty goal I want it to stop. Do I have negative thoughts about people sometimes? Sure, I wouldn't be human if i didn't but it doesnt have to be so bad, we can be excellent to each other. So here are some suggestions...

  1.  See something beautiful appreciate it
  2. Tell the truth, but don't use it as an excuse to be an asshole
  3. Help those who need it, as well as those less fortunate than yourself- and there is always someone
  4. Let people know you care- it's not shameful or embarrassing to let people know you care about them
  5. Respect others- they are entitled to their opinions,  having differing opinions is ok as long as the opinion isnt hurting someone- in which case keep it to yourself
  6. Know when to shut up.
  7. Respect yourself- you're amazing and you have talents the world could do with, dont bring yourself down by ignoring them.
  8. Sometimes people (including yourself) are wrong, acccept it, call them out on it if necessary, but don't hold it against them.
  9. Always take the opportunity to make the world a better place, even if it is time you don't think you have.
  10. Do something for your community, bring some beauty into the world, talk to someone lonely, help an old woman or man with their groceries, encourage your child, you never know it could be the catalyst that takes them on to better things
  11. Be positive, the only thing that comes from being negative is stress, anxiety and being pissed off if you like those things go for it, otherwise learn to focus on things that make you happy.

    Got anything to add?  Let me know in the comments!