11 Ramadan 2015: It doesn’t matter if they don’t, you do

Don’t wait for other people to be loving, giving, compassionate, grateful, forgiving, generous, or friendly … lead the way! – Steve Maraboli


What a tough thing to do … doing for others irrespective if they do for you.

I have to admit, it was often a point of argument between my mom and I as she always believed that we always had to do the right thing be it the more ‘compassionate’ thing, or the more ‘generous’ thing, or the more ‘friendly’ thing, or the more ‘respectful’ thing, etc… we simply had to do it.

I guess what she was trying to say is that irrespective of what people do, we are accounted for what we do and even if people do not appreciate or reciprocate, we must always do the right thing.

I still think it is tough, especially as …

pride, hurt, confusion, and ‘shock’ often kick in and talk us out of doing the more generous, friendly, respectful or compassionate thing.

So through reflections following my mom’s death, I realized that the best strategy is to have zero expectations from others and all expectations from ourselves within the boundaries of our capabilities, abilities and responsibilities. Then, even if we don’t do the more generous, friendly, respectful or compassionate thing, we know that it was beyond our boundaries of capability, ability and responsibility, with a clear conscious.

The *magical* thing is that as soon as I decided to have zero expectations, I followed my heart more clearly, found the more generous, friendly, respectful or compassionate thing easier to do and more importantly, it limited the pride, hurt, confusion, and ‘shock’ that stands in the way.

So this Ramadan, my mom taught me to …

have ‘zero expectations’.



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