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August 22

Giving without Judgment

I’ve watched many people in my life, and have found that they often seem to find it easier to do something nice for a stranger than for those closest to them. Of course, this isn’t the case for everyone, but I’ve often noticed that people, myself included, help a fallen stranger with ease while pausing to do the exact same thing for someone they know. Isn’t that the strangest thing? So, as I pondered on this thought over the last couple of days, I couldn’t help but try to rationalize out why that is.

Let’s take an act of kindness, such as giving money to someone. Giving to a stranger or an acquaintance can perhaps be easier, as it’s something that can be done without any strings attached. Not having much contact with that person may make it easier to give to them unreservedly. 

On the other hand, when we give to someone we know well as an act of kindness, perhaps it adds more of a stigma. If we see them regularly, they could feel obligated to return the favor quickly and calculate a balance between us, despite our assuring them that isn’t the reason for giving. Perhaps, subconsciously, we are worried that it will affect our relationship with them going forward. Will they come to expect favors from us, creating the idea that we will always be there to bail them out?

Immediately, whether we mean to or not, we can attach emotions and social stereotypes to an act of giving whether or not we believe they may come true. This, in turn, may make it easier to extend yourself to someone you’re unsure you will ever see again.

But it’s a wonderful thing to help people! I consider it crucial to break free of social constructs and judgments when considering doing something nice for someone. For me, I am trying hard to break away from restrictive social norms and instead freely give and help where I can. I find the more I can come from a place of gratitude and offering, the better things may be for everyone. It’s a win-win. And I’ve found the first step to help me in this type of situation is to cancel all the learned behaviors of what “could be” and just focus on the factors and how I feel. I love this person. I want to help them. I want them to succeed.

Let’s take an act of kindness, such as giving money to someone. Giving to a stranger or an acquaintance can perhaps be easier, as it’s something that can be done without any strings attached. Not having much contact with that person may make it easier to give to them unreservedly. 

You can never truly predict or force someone to react a certain way, but you can gently guide their response by reassuring them there are no strings attached to your act of kindness. When I find myself looking to do something nice for someone close to me now, I will meditate on the situation as it comes up, bring forth the gratitude I have that I am in a place to help someone, and live in that for a moment. Next, I will see the best possible outcome for the situation. I’ll see the person I’m helping happily succeeding, and I’ll see myself happy for them. Just by projecting that positive intention out there and coming from that place of giving without judgment, we can set the stage for an act of kindness clearly placed without any strings attached.

It’s amazing what we can accomplish and the joy we can bring forth if we learn to strip away expectations and societal judgments and just live in gratitude. It really can make a world of difference. So, I challenge you to give without reservation when you find yourself in a place to do so. Whether it involves a stranger or a close friend or family member, spreading kindness and doing so unapologetically can be a powerful tool to help make the world a bit of a better place, one small step at a time.

 

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Malorie Mackey

Actress, author and adventurer

Malorie Mackey is an actress, host, and writer living in Los Angeles, CA. Malorie's first book was published in 2017 and her short story "What Love Has Taught Me" has been published in the anthology "Choices.” You can find Malorie’s travel content on dozens of digital media platforms. Check out www.maloriesadventures.com for more. Malorie's adventures don't just encompass physical adventures. She has been a student of intuition since she was a teenager, studying at Edgar Cayce’s A.R.E. In 2019, Malorie discovered the Monroe Institute while filming her travel show. Since then, she has been studying the art and science of consciousness through many different programs and life experiences.
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