Let’s be honest, it’s a simple concept right? Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. From the moment we were born, it’s almost a guarantee that our parents instilled this upon us every time we hit a kid in the lunch line, made fun of someone, or just generally complained too much. So, why then, and when, did this simple rule seem to fade away into the background? Also, will we ever be TRULY able to get it back? The answer might be more simple than you think, but I think it’s a yes.
First off, let me explain WHY this came around into my head just now, and also let me please explain that I am NOT a wild radical of world peace and such. I mean, it would be nice, but I am talking about this on a much much more micro scale.
I love music, always have and always will. I also feel very honored to listen to, and talk to some of the musicians that literally give their life to their art. Always being on the road without their family, barely getting by, not sleeping in a bed for months…I was a in a small scale band, I have the utmost respect for them all. Why am I giving this speech? Recently, one of my favorite musicians of all time, Dan Regan, said that he would be retiring from the band that, as cliche as it sounds, got me through a few rough spots in my life and opened my eyes to the world of music itself. I had the honor of actually meeting him once at a show in Cleveland, and he was one of the nicest people I have ever met. In his goodbye speech to the fans, out of EVERYTHING he could have said, he said five simple words, that for some reason echoed across miles in my head, “Be nice to each other.” Now granted, his life as a musician was tough, coming from a band that took literally their wholes lives to achieve the slight fame they have, and instead of anything negative or something like “jokes on you,” he simply made that one request. I have no idea if he actually knew it was going to make the impact it did, but knowing him I don’t think it really mattered anyway.
Let’s take a look at what that can actually mean, and maybe even conceptualize the meaning of “nice.” itself. We love to believe that being “nice” means giving people money, or giving someone a gift, or things of that materialistic nature, but is it really? Can “nice” simply be smiling at someone? Can it be holding a door for someone? Or can it even be just being generally respectable to people? Honestly, I think most people would agree. So if so, why is it so hard for us to “be nice to each other?” Sometimes, we love to over think things, and sometimes I feel we just honestly don’t care. Unfortunately we now live in a world where people think it’s all about me me me me me me…but this makes you forget about us us us us us us. We are all in this together, so take a look around and be happy that there are people there that can enjoy this experience with you.
Again, I don’t want to be that guy that always rants about world peace, because let’s be honest, that’s just as bad as thinking being “nice” is giving someone a couple hundred dollars. Don’t get me wrong, these things ARE nice…however I feel that it all starts from the bottom up. After all, you smile before you speak right?
So next time you’re out with family, friends, at a party, or anything at all, be nice to each other. Be nice to the people you know, the people you don’t know, and the people you will NEVER know. Don’t be that person that is only nice on Sunday, or that person that thinks being nice is giving everyone your attention, honestly what do you think that will help? You never know who you will meet, or when you will meet them, or how. Sometimes being “nice” can even be considered “weak” or “lame,” and to those people, I will be even nicer to you.
So go out there and smile at people, treat people with respect, and know that sometimes all you have to do is say hello.