What’s This All About?

“If you’re going to do something, do it.”

– Richard Gere, in the 1994 movie Intersection

These days, it seems everyone has opinions about how everyone else ought to live. No matter which side of the political spectrum, policy issue, or lifestyle topic you’re on, you probably think the world would be better if people would just do what you think they should (drive less, go to church more, stop watching TV … there are many opinions).

Actually, not quite everyone. Consider No Impact Man – One guy (and his family) trying to undertake great change in his life, and simply writing about the experience so that other may learn. He makes a point of not telling you what to do in your own life. He just opens a window into his own, in case you’re interested. The result is a refreshing, inviting, and ultimately inspiring environment.

Inspired partly by the efforts of individuals like No Impact Man, I’ve decided to undertake a very simple project: Do something good (that I probably wouldn’t have done otherwise) every day. That’s it. I’ll write it up here and perhaps provide photo documentation, when possible.

What’s your definition of “good”?

By “good,” I just mean something, no matter how small, that generally makes the world a better place to live. There are many possibilities–helping someone cross the street, doing volunteer work, calling an old friend, giving to charity… Granted, there will probably be those who disagree with how “good” certain actions are (or if they’re even good at all), but hopefully common sense can be our guide. And even if you have a problem with one thing, hopefully you’ll see the whole project as a net positive contribution.

Why write about your good deeds? Isn’t that egotistical?

Perhaps. I can certainly see why people would think that. But the reason I’m writing this blog is that I’m hoping that my attempt as a regular, not particularly altrustic individual to do good things, not just occassionally, not just when it’s convenient, but every day, will be interesting, informative, and perhaps even inspirational for others.

Does every good turn have to be different?

Ideally, yes, although it’s probably inevitable that at some point I’ll repeat myself. Doing something a second time is better than doing nothing.

Who are you?

My name is Josh, and I live in the San Francisco Bay Area.   I develop software by day, and am married to the most wonderful woman I know.

What if you can’t keep it up?

At least I tried. It’s better than not trying.

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9 responses to “What’s This All About?

  1. Great idea. Good luck.

  2. Pingback: Kicking things off: Inviting an old friend (or friends) to dinner « One Good Turn

  3. My good deed of the day is to point out that it was Martin Landau who said the infamous words “Whatever you’re gonna do, do it”, presumably to Richard Gere, though at least in the snippet in the trailer (as far as any of us have made it, I suspect), it’s unclear who the audience is.

    Richard Gere, however, did have the other classic line, “I don’t wanna lose you, I can’t lose you, I wanna be with you.”

  4. This is such a good idea! And the first good deed is actually doing it, and not just talking about it, which I seem to be better at. If I could help, I would like to join by trying to fill the days where good deeds are hard for you to accomplish and entering mine. A community effort might be more effective overall, and maybe even more fun!

  5. I don’t always give my wife a kiss when she gets home from work. Today I made sure I did. We both felt better as a result.

  6. It’s not egotistical to post what your good turns are! Just think of it as balancing all the “bad turns” we read about in the news everyday!!!

  7. Just letting you know that I included you in my Top 15 list of Favorite Green Guys Blogs . . .

    la marguerite
    http://lamarguerite.wordpress.com

  8. SQUEEAK! I *try* but don’t always get there, to do one good thing a day. I’ve begun to see the world as light and dark, and if I can’t add to the light, then I do my best not to add to the dark: I won’t get angry if someone cuts me off in traffic, etc. 🙂 Thanks for making the world better!!!

  9. I just found this blog today – and I *love* it – it was so nice to read something postive and uplifting after all the negative news everywhere else. Thank you for the idea (^-^)

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