Isn’t it funny how a stranger can bring out the best in us and yet the people we love the most get stuck with our bad moods?  We’re impatient with our partners, kids and parents.  And, we have no problem reserving our life frustrations for those we love.

We tell ourselves it’s because we’re most comfortable around those who know and love us.  And, in a strange sort of way we actually think it’s a compliment that we can be ourselves around our close family and friends.  Yet, I always thought this was the wrong way to look at it.  Shouldn’t we reserve our best treatment for those we love?

Let’s ask ourselves these questions: Do we treat our children or our parents with the same respect we use to treat our employees and co-workers?   When our partner expresses hurt, caused by us, do we take ownership of it when they share their feelings or do we get defensive, lash out at them and tell them how they aren’t doing enough for us?  Do we apologize when we’re wrong? Are our words positive and gentle or filled with sarcasm or biting retorts?

For sure, the world exacts its toll on us.  We keep a pleasant outlook but sometimes it takes a lot of energy to stay positive.  And, despite knowing that some day we will have to say goodbye to the people we love, we still, in the present moment, don’t always treat them that way.

Look, we’re not robots.  We can’t always be in a good mood nor should we have to hide our frustrations from those closest to us.  There are times when we need to relax and let it all out.  But, we should also make a conscious effort to pick and choose when we relieve ourselves of our negative emotions and focus on showing the people we love the best we have to offer – no matter how stressful our life is at that moment.

We all have bad days.  In fact, we have bad weeks and years.  But let’s try to be present and positive with those we love while we have the chance.  Let’s try to do the small things we know will put a smile on their face – the face we adore!  Let’s do it as often as we can.  We don’t know when we might not get one more chance.  I’m sure we will never, ever regret making someone we love feel good!

Hug the people you love today and have an amazing start to your week!