Helping Hand

You surely have helped someone at some time. And surely somebody has helped you. But how important is the help that you gave in your eyes today? And how important is the help that you received today? Rajesh Setty raises these questions in his blog and explains that there is a research which shows that in time the help that we gave seems more and more important to us and the help that we received seem less important. It means that people who receive help tend to forget it in time.

I started thinking about myself – how do I expect my help to be appreciated? To be honest, I really don’t remember much cases when I have done a great favor to anyone. It doesn’t mean that I haven’t helped anyone – it means that I really help without thinking of any appreciation or reward for my help. Maybe I just don’t think my help to the others is such a big deal.

I only remember one case when my help seemed to be completely forgotten. A colleague of mine collapsed in the office and I was the only one around. When he fell he swallowed his tongue and stopped breathing. I pulled his tongue out so he could breathe and then asked the other co-workers to call the ambulance. The guy had something like a heart attack – I am not quite sure because after the ambulance took him he started a very long treatment and he didn’t come to the office for many months. When we saw each other after that we talked shortly about his condition and his recovery bu never about the stroke.

During that time I felt like I’ve done something very important and deep in my heart I expected to see some form of appreciation. At least I saved his live! If I hadn’t pulled his tongue out he would have died! But in time I realized that people don’t want to be in debt to someone. They are tormented by the thought that they owe their lives to someone and they don’t feel happy about it. So they tend to forget the incident.

I remember that I had a similar situation when my life was saved by a stranger. When I was about 10 I just have learned to swim and I wanted to show my swimming abilities to my parents. We were at a picnic near a pond and I was happy to swim near the shore. Unfortunately, I couldn’t swim well and I needed firm ground to step on from time to time. What was my surprise when I couldn’t find the ground under my feet! The bottom was too steep and I stared drowning. I panicked and I don’t remember the details. I only remember the strong hand that took me out of the water and the happy feeling that I was alive.

The man who saved me was a complete stranger. We went separate ways and we never met again. And I find that I also tend to forget that incident. Maybe it’s not because I don’t appreciate the help but because I have too many things to do every day and I forget about such important things. I think it’s human nature to forget and it’s not bad.

I believe we should not expect great appreciation for the help that we have given. We just have to be good to our friend and neighbors and to help them gratuitously. God knows hot to reward us for being helpful but we shouldn’t think about the reward. If we have received help from the others it is good to recall the event from time to time and to say “Thank you!” to those people even only in our thoughts. Our gratitude will be remembered.

If you like my blog, my writing style, or my point of view, to guarantee that you won’t miss a publication, subscribe to this blog’s content via RSS feed or via email.