Every so often, a piece of advice pops up on the Life Pro Tips subreddit that makes me say, "Huh! That's a great way to treat other people better."
It's so easy to get frustrated or annoyed when dealing with other people, and forget to think about where they might be coming from. So with that in mind, I found a bunch of Life Pro Tips that are solid reminders to be just a little nicer and empathetic to your friends, family, and anyone else you might encounter.
1. If you know someone who always talks your ear off, consider that maybe they don’t have anyone to talk to and try to engage right back with them.
"Engage them in deep conversation every now and then (if you can) and you may just make their day. You never know what people might be dealing with in private."
2. If someone asks you a question that can be easily Googled, consider the fact that this person might just want to talk with you.
3. On the flip side, the next time you have an easily Googleable question about food, clothes, or general life stuff, text your parent and ask them instead.
"This is something I've been doing lately just because I feel like my mom seems happier when I do. I'm in my last year of college and realized I typically just Googled all my questions that I had as I figure out living on my own. This past year though, I've been texting her all my silly little questions: 'How can I get X stain out of my carpet easily?' 'Do you know any home-remedies for a sore throat?'
It might seem really trivial, but I think anyone would love to know that you still rely on them and not only appreciate their advice, but seek it out too."
4. If your friend suddenly starts acting shady or distant from you for no apparent reason, check up on them to make sure they are ok.
"Sometimes people need people to check up on them, but don’t want to seem needy."
5. Try to be patient if someone seems to be "overreacting."
"You never know what is taking place in a stranger's life."
6. Don't always assume that someone won't be able to go to an event (or won't want to). Invite them anyway, just in case.
"That way, they know they haven't purposefully been left out. It'll avoid a lot of negativity."
7. After you receive a gift card as a present, take a picture of what you bought with the card and send it with the thank you note.
"It makes their generosity much more meaningful and shows appreciation."
8. If someone you know just experienced something tragic, like a really bad breakup or losing someone close, check in on them at the three-week mark.
"This is typically where everyone else gets back to their normal life, and then suddenly they feel really lonely. I'm not saying wait three weeks, I'm not saying it will be over anytime soon. And I'm not telling you to become their crutch (which may drag you down if you're not in the best place yourself).
I'm letting you know that after three weeks, a lot of people with the best intentions slowly get back to their own lives, which may leave the hurt person lonely and in a bad place. Just be aware, don't pummel them with questions, but make sure to ask once in a while, let then know you are there if they need you. Just be attentive and help where you can, be a friend. They'll need you more than ever."
9. Similarly, if someone tells you about an event in their life coming up, add it to your calendar so you can follow up with them after, no matter how big or small it is.
10. Share as much good news with people as you do bad news.
"Good listeners can sometimes get overwhelmed, and it's nice to hear positive news."
11. Do something for someone else the next time you’re feeling low or shitty. You’d be surprised how another person’s gratitude can boost your self-worth.
12. Also, be as kind as you can to the next three people you encounter when you're in a bad mood.
"By not reacting to the bad mood, as well as helping others, you'll feel miles better."
13. When your friends cancel or back out of plans just so they can stay home, don’t make them feel worse than they probably already do.
"After a day or two, ask how things are going and make sure they know you’re there for them if they need support."
14. If someone asks you to hang out or catch up and you are busy, suggest a time you are free instead of just saying you are busy.
"This shows the other party you are interested in having a relationship with them."
15. And if you have to cancel plans with someone, immediately ask them when they are free again in the future and make replacement plans.
"It makes people feel like you do really care about seeing them and you appear less flaky."
16. If you ask someone what they do for a living and they give you a vague/generic answer, change the subject. They're either not proud of their job or they don't want you to know.
"Prying will only make the conversation uncomfortable."
17. When someone is excited about something that you don't think is a good idea, don't burst their bubble right away. Wait until they're in a more logical state before asking questions that might discourage them.
"I'm talking about the INITIAL excitement. When they're telling you the idea is the peak, so just let that die down a bit first before pointing out the possible obstacles."