Being Good for Something


  • Published on August 5, 2020

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Status is online Lyndsay Whitby, CPCC Attachment and Mindfulness Coach and Trainer. 2 articles


Being Good for Something.  "Do not be too moral. You may cheat yourself out of much life. Aim above morality. Be not simply good; be good for something." Henry David Thoreau

That “something” could be even teaching yourself how to love and be compassionate with yourself and to learn that while practicing gratitude.  I emphasize “TEACH” because simply saying “love yourself”, “be kind to yourself”, “forgive yourself”, “be compassionate to yourself “ is all lovely terminology. But more often than not, we aren’t taught how to do that. I know I wasn’t! Through no fault of anyone’s.  And so most of the time all it ever is, is terminology . We shun away from it convincing ourselves: “that’s not for me”. That’s for the spiritual wackos. E.g. me.  The subconscious resistance to doing something so unfamiliar is completely natural and expected.  Imagine if someone said, “you can drive a formula-one car”, your first reactions would be “no way I could do that!”, doubt rears it’s head, resistance pops up, fear, anxiety, and so on because it’s an unfamiliar challenge. But surely if we are “taught” how to drive one, then with each lesson those monsters slowly dissipate. It wouldn’t be as simple as getting in one and driving off at adrenaline creating speeds. And sure, you may not become a formula-one junkie as that would be determined by your commitment and passion, but you’d surely be able to get in and drive. If you were “taught”. Right?

Any emotion -just as any behaviour -is learned. We can’t feel something we’ve never felt or been taught to feel. Our own imagination is mostly limited by what we saw or experienced ourselves. We spend all our childhood days vying for our parents love through various ways, persistently giving of ourselves and sacrificing our authenticity, demanding, hoping, sometimes in desperation, while acting out and projecting.....The list could go on infinitely. Conclusion is, as adults we end up being the same way not just with our other relationships, but mostly within ourselves. All learned behaviours!  The good news is, all these can be unlearned and overwritten by new ones. Nothing is so fixed that we can’t let it go and learn new ways of being. The biggest outcome of this is when we teach ourselves new ways of being, we perceive ourselves differently and when we perceive ourselves differently, the world around us changes by the same beautiful proportion. Like magic, almost. 

What emotion would you like to learn within yourself? Is it love? Kindness? Maybe patience? Or even gentleness? Could it be gratitude? It doesn’t matter which one we choose (there are so many) as long as there’s committment to it. I challenge you to start teaching yourself that consciously. TODAY. Repeat every day until you fully embrace and embody it. If it ever gets challenging, ask for safe support.  Remember: When we try something new we have a new experience, as long as we don’t , we simply recycle the same experiences over and over and call it a life. 

You’ve got nothing to lose, right? 

Be good for something. 

I wish you love and light and sending a big hug. (Even from distance).


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