Phew! After the last two posts it is kind of Nice to relax and not go so …. deep! Seriously what is up with the word nice?
We were told “Be nice” as we first ventured off to meet other toddlers, as we interacted with our siblings, and as we strode over to confront our first conflict. “Be nice now.” We say it to our dogs when they meet another dog on leash. A soft calming, ‘be nice’ as we tighten the grip on their leash.
Somehow we knew how to be nice. I don’t recall stopping in mid-stride to ask, “What’s be nice?” I do remember thinking, “hell no I am not going to be nice, they’re going to get it for sure!” and then I was nice. Somehow by the time I met them face to face, I saw something, felt something that told me to ‘be nice’ deeper inside than the words my parents spoke.
Do not get me wrong there were plenty of times when ‘be nice’ wasn’t uttered or heard before the conflict. Although there was ‘well do what you think is best’ and you ended up being nice. Being the diplomat, finding the compromise, seeing with different eyes and sensing something deeper about the person that made ‘be nice’ the only solution.
Yet when we describe an object as Nice it is just so-so. Nice isn’t a demonstrative descriptive adjective. It is like milk toast; warm but soggy.
So if that is the case how is it when being Nice we can alter someone’s life and even ours? How is that when we were asked to ‘be nice’ as toddlers we instinctually what that meant and how to act? Maybe it is a four-letter milk toasty word these days but it is so very powerful.
Today take one moment, one insignificant moment and Be Nice …. you just might be surprised what happens.