A police academy conference was called to discuss the long-term implications of police officers shooting criminals.
During the conference, an anonymous police officer called in to share his personal experience. He described the deep trauma he was left with following an incident in which he was forced to shoot someone. He could no longer sleep at night, he explained – it was truly difficult to live with the knowledge that he had killed another human being.
“Sir, I must say you are the exact police officer that we want in our ranks,” the chief commissioner declared, “who else would we want to handle such a delicate role – someone who sleeps well!?”
Just as negative actions impact us deeply and give birth to tangible emotions, positive actions yield a similar result. Although we may not feel that we have the drive or ability to carry out a particular act initially, it is through the performance of the deed itself that the appropriate sentiment is created.
Do you find yourself not in the mood of taking up the opportunity to offer a favor? Seize the moment and take action – the action itself will inspire and motivate you!
It is in this vein that the Talmud teaches: one mitzvah leads to another mitzvah. Indeed, rather than action being viewed as a consequence of our mood, good deeds actually generate our mood!
Conventional wisdom tells us that we only do good things when we feel like it, but Jewish wisdom teaches that we feel good when we do good things!
So, debating whether or not to do something good? Just do it – and celebrate the rising sense of goodwill that follows!