Showing Genuine Care

“No one cares how much you know, until they know how much you care.” ~ Don Swartz … 

Don is sharing a powerful message with us here: involving others in our lives requires us to be involved in life. And I feel this could be expanded upon a bit to include that we also show concern for others in our lives, since others tend to care more when they see how much we care. For example, when I am talking to my wife or children, if they show me they are listening intently and eagerly, I am much more compelled to continue speaking. In addition, teachers who care about their students, as well as what they are teaching, generally tend to reach their students much more effectively.

This message is especially important when applied with our younger children. Children, being naturally dependent on others in their lives, need people to teach them and help them grow–those who are truly involved in their lives and who show genuine care and concern for them. This essentially means that what we teach children comes behind us showing them how much we care, for if they know we care, then they will be much more inclined to listen to us, to become involved in growing, and put forth the effort we ask of them.

It is a wonderful thing to share the knowledge we have gained with those around us. And lucky for us, there are countless individuals in need of good advice. However, we would do well in remembering that by showing we care–that we are not only interested in ourselves–we will be received with an open heart and mind. Thus, our message may gain permanency–it is going to be that much more effective and lasting in their lives.

Most of us enjoy helping others out by sharing our knowledge. Nonetheless, if our sharing falls upon deaf ears, then it seems rather worthless. Thankfully, by letting others know that we truly do care about them and not just showing them how much we know, we can have a much greater positive effect on their lives. The truth of the matter is that every seed needs soil that has been prepared before it can grow to its full potential.

Go out of your way to show someone you care about them today–their life, their struggles, their feelings.

Questions to consider:

How can we show others that we do care for them?

Why do we so often put knowledge above things like caring?

Think of several teachers you have had, good and bad. Which ones cared the most? How did you know they cared?

For further thought:

“The more things you care about, and the more intensely you care, the more alive you are. This capacity for caring can illuminate any relationship: marriage, family, friendships–even the ties of affection that often join humans and animals. Each of us is born with some of it, but whether we let it expand or diminish is largely up to us. To care, you have to surrender the armor of indifference. You have to be willing to act, to make the first move.” ~ Arthur Gordon, A Touch of Wonder

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