Have you ever heard of the theory that there are no selfless acts?  I can sum it up by saying that there’s a notion which says that the personal satisfaction you get from doing something good for another person takes away the element of selflessness because you feel enjoyment.  For example, I pick up my friend from the roadside after her car breaks down.  The theory would say that I might feel good about helping my friend and that good feeling negates the selfless act.  I guess Mother Theresa was nothing more than an over indulgent self satisfier in her day- but I digress.  Feeling good about helping someone is not so much an issue.  What is an issue is that people will do favors for other people with the expectation of reciprocation. (I know those are fancy words but I enjoy a rhyme every now and then)  This type of thought is plain unfair and truly negates the act of doing a good deed.  All too often I hear people complain about how much they go out of their way for xyz person and then when the tables are turned the same help doesn’t occur.  If you are looking to depend on people when you are in a bind there is a simple answer- GET DEPENDABLE FRIENDS.  Offering help/doing favors has no implication that the same will be done for you.  So unless you’re having potential helpees (you being the helper) sign contracts stating that helping is a reciprocal action, there is no guarantee that Joe will come help change your tire even though you helped him last week.  There is no direct or indirect correlation between how much help you give and receive.  So help 1 or 100 people- whatever feels right to you.  Give freely, give generously, give happily…just understand that you aren’t subliminally helping yourself by helping others.
Advertisements