One of the highest compliments that can be paid to a professional athlete is that, “he makes those around him better”.
That means that the player is a role model of commitment, unselfishness, and teamwork. Teams that win usually have at least one player who makes the other players better. But we don’t have to be a professional athlete to make those around us better.
All of us are in a position to influence others: children and other family members; friends; and coworkers. How many of us think about ourselves as role models? In some cases we have abdicated that responsibility by not thinking about it – and the world is worse off because of that.
Others are watching when we display our gratitude for someone who has been of help to us, and others are watching when we fail to say thank you. Others are watching when we assert ourselves in the face of unfair treatment, and others are watching when we tolerate abuse. Others are watching when we treat everybody with respect and dignity, and others are watching when we add our unkind words to those who are disrespecting someone because of their minority status or difference of opinion.
These are just a few examples. Almost every day we have the opportunity to make those around us better by choosing healthy, honest, compassionate, and respectful behaviors – personally and in our interactions with others. These behaviors aren’t generally performed in a vacuum outside of the awareness of others. Don’t abdicate your role as a role model. Consistent emotionally healthy behavior is what we promote at The Mental Health Gym because it makes not only you better – but also those around you better.