Thoughts on Being a Better Person

Ironic timing for this. Just after doing one of the Blogging 101 exercises, I was forced to think a bit. It was shortly after I commented on a writing/personal blog linked here. (Speaking of which, you should definitely check the blog out. It seems to have lots of blogging potential.)

She talks about her simple goal to just become a better person over the next few months. I even commented that by the intent to become a better person, she’s already on her way. But it made me think a bit over my personal life. I know the purpose for this blog. I know the purpose of my book. But do I know my own purpose right now? And do I really want to become a better person?

It may seem like an odd question. At least deep down, I think everyone wants to be a good person, even if we aren’t naturally good. But what am I doing to better myself today? That’s a lot of italics, I know, but roll with it for a little bit.

That’s a lot of italics, I know, but roll with it for a little bit.

I realize that I ought to be always trying to better myself. Obviously I will never become perfect, but if I know I have faults, I have to at least try to correct them. I think I had come to a point where I wanted to become a better writer and blogger, but not actually change myself. But now I think I will start giving it a try again.

So how does one change themselves? As I told the blogger who inspired this, it starts with the desire. But there is more to the story. We Christians have a saying regarding self-improvement. Paul says it in Philippians 4:8. It goes like this.

It is similar to the Buddhist eightfold path. In fact, I’ve even openly referred to it as the Christian eightfold path in front of friends. So when you are making a decision, you must think. Is it:

  • true
  • noble
  • right
  • pure
  • lovely
  • admirable
  • excellent
  • praiseworthy

That’s a long list, I know. But it looks really cool in list form, so I thought I’d put it like that. Anyhow, I have made a determination. When I make a risky decision from now on, I will go through this verse, this eightfold path, in my mind. If even one thing cannot be checked off, I should at least rethink the decision.

Now, this does not mean that people cannot enjoy fighting or reading a good fantasy battle. If it is for good reason, such as protecting their family, friends or country, then it is admirable and praiseworthy. It does not have to fit all the requirements.

So, what are you doing to better yourself today?

Think about it.

A Rebuttal

Just a moment ago, I made a very depressing blog post about how I have become distressed over the very thing I want to enjoy. While it is true, I would like to make a rebuttal.

I love writing. I love my book, and I love all my followers – every single one! I have no need to have more twitter followers than I already do. I have no need to have thousands of people liking my things every second. I have no need of more Facebook fans or more views per week. I don’t need any of that.

Depression will get to me at times. It’s true, and it’s something I can’t ignore. There will definitely be times when I don’t want to write, I don’t want to talk about writing and times when I most certainly don’t want to blog about how awesome it is and how to do it better. But neither the highs or the lows define me.

But regardless of whether I want to do it or not, the muse stands beside me and waits. Because the simple fact is that writing is a part of my life. Through writing I have gained friends I could never have gained otherwise, many not even from my own country. I strive to write, day in, day out. Sometimes its great, sometimes its awful. Sometimes its depressing and sometimes it makes me feel more alive than I have ever felt.

And what can I do to keep me going? What can I do to make it better? I can answer this question for myself. The only thing I can do to keep me going is to keep on doing it.

To my fellow writers, I say this:
Write when you are happy. Write when you are sad. Write when it embraces and when it crushes. The world is not always sunshine and roses, and your writing doesn’t need to be either. Write when it hurts to write. Write when your pen flows easy. Be sure to take a break on the occasion. Drink some tea and lay back in your comfy armchair. But when you are done, write again! One day you may look back, and you will say that you are glad that you did it even when it was hard, because beauty was made in the midst of rubble.

Just write. And I assure you, you will feel better for it.