Somebody’s Watching You!

March 18, 2009

Remember the song from the 80’s that said, “I always feel like somebody’s watching me ….” ?

At the risk of being considered the bearer of un-welcomed news, I feel I should inform you that it’s true !  Somebody is watching you!

When I was a child my father often reminded me of that fact.

“Beck!”,  he’d say “Whatever you do someone will always see you doing it!”

Even as a youngster I knew his words were spoken with much wisdom.  What he said, combined with the fact that he lived by his own advice, caused me to approach my world with an acute awareness of my surroundings, the company I kept, and how my actions might be affecting others.

This article is not intended to incite paranoia!  It is simply a reminder that you are being watched more than you might think.   Every action you take makes an impact on the world in one way or another.  This fact is easily overlooked because in most cases, people don’t tend to say a lot about it.  Unfortunately, that is true especially in situations where we have impacted others in a positive way!

Negative or positive, regardless of whether we hear about it or not, it’s still a very real and important truth.

Somebody’s watching you!

Perhaps it’s “only” your children.  I think it’s fair to say that our children know us better than anyone else on earth.  They see us at our best, and at our worst.   Whether we are dressed in our “Sunday go to meetin’ clothes” or wearing our ratty old pajamas;  speaking words of encouragement, or giving someone a piece of our mind in traffic, they will be taking mental notes!

And those “notes” will influence them for the rest of their lives.

As parents, we have the responsibility of setting a good example for our kids.  It’s not good enough to tell them what is “right” and what is “wrong”.  Our actions speak so much more loudly than our words!  If we tell our children not to steal, cheat or lie but continue to do those things ourselves, they will notice.

Guess which example they will most likely follow?

While the occasional child will see negative behavior from his/her parents and be so appalled or embarrassed by it that they’ll make a conscious effort to act differently, nine times out of ten they will do what they see us do instead of basing their behaviors on our spoken words.

What a sobering thought that can be!

Personally, I believe our kids are probably the most important people we will ever influence, but they are not the only ones to be considered.

Our co-workers see us, our employers and employees … the neighbors, the lady behind (or in front) of us in the checkout line at the grocery store … and even the dirty rotten so and so who took the parking spot we had our eye on!

The list is endless but the point remains the same, intentional or otherwise, your actions will have an impact on the lives of others.

Maybe you are one of the fortunate ones among us who have already mastered this reality and put it into practice.  If so, that is wonderful!

If  you’re like most of us though , and still have “work” to do in this area, please know that it’s never too late to start!   Just as bad habits are developed over time, so are the good ones!  It has been indicated that a person has to practice an action for about twenty one days in order for that action to become habitual.

Or in other words, once you’ve consciously done something for twenty one days in a row, you will likely continue to do it without even thinking about it first!

My challenge to you is to begin today to make your words and actions very conscious things.   Think about everything you do before you do it.  Rehearse your words before you say them, making sure they are well seasoned before they leave your lips.  Once a deed is done, it cannot be undone, once a word is spoken it cannot be taken back.

Consider how your actions will affect your children, your spouse, your neighbor or friend … or the stranger you pass on the street every day, and act accordingly.

Go ahead!   Try it!

In only three short weeks you could be well on your way to making a positive difference in the lives of all those somebodies who happen to be watching you.

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