When Actions are Considered Good


I don’t really know how to start this without seeming rude or confused. Therefore, I apologize for any discomfort that I may provide,

I was wondering when actions, both with others and myself, can be considered good. I always thought that good actions should be those that are not aimed towards oneself. That good actions should be selfless. But, Then I think if one wishes to help another why is that? I’ve heard, from no specific person, that helping people makes them feel good.

But, isn’t that towards oneself? What if they are helping because they are sick with an aspect of them self, and they wish to rid it in someone else? Or what if It is on a whim? Boredom? does that make it selfish?

I feel so bad, and I know right now I am a bad person for even thinking such a thought. I’ve heard not all people have bad intent, or some people do want to help. But, then what does that make me, Or people like me? am I bad for questioning, are my feelings of fear and anxiety bad? I can’t help thinking I am bad.

I always tell myself, If I can just do or give one act of kindness I can learn to be a better person. But, then I think is that not bad itself. shouldn’t there not be a second layer of doubt, that I should really just enjoy it? I mean I have those rare moments where on impulse I do feel good about a “kind deed.” Be it in school or a community service event. Or even helping my family/friends around the house…

Yet, there’s always a little nagging feeling that it’s not good enough, or somehow selfish. Ironically, I don’t want to be selfish. I don’t wish to be bad. But, these thoughts are surely bad, aren’t they. So, I must be somehow wrong, right?

I’m told over and over not to over think it, and honestly I don’t want to say, I don’t over think things. I know I do. Nonetheless, thinking or rather talking things through, no matter how complicated or “messed up,” brings me a sense of relief.It resolves the issue. I’ve tried speaking with my family, and friends, but there is always something missing. That’s why I came here. I know it may be a bothersome question–when do actions be it the ones I do or other’s become considered good–but it will lessen my anxiety. If anyone can or is willing to provide an answer to the question, or even a good method for silencing the doubt that would be great. Regardless, I am just thankful if anyone reads this eccentric question. Thank you so much for reading.

Tags: asked May 27, 2014

3 Answers

hm, very interesting tbh, you bring up a great point. Why are "good" actions done by people. you aren't a bad person for thinking about why they do it or what affects. in all truths yes, some people do "good" deeds from the kindness of their heart, they do them not because they want to, not because it makes them feel "good", but because its RIGHT. true others use this "good" deeds act to take advantage of people. to control and feel "good" now in that context THAT "good" is bad. they are very selfish if in that contextual area they do "good" not for others but for themselves. id honestly like to keep talking about this its pretty interesting. pm me if you want to open the topic up a bit more ^^ hope i helped haha
i like your question, i always think the questions where my answer confuses myself is a good question. there are alot of ways to think about what is good or bad. but me, being not religious on morals and stuff, i think that as long as your not hurting anyone, if you are happy with who you are and how you feel, then your not doing anything bad, if you feel the opposite, then you just need to swallow the anxiety and try things that make you feel good through it. your not a bad person for thinking this way. personally i dont do much helping for people. i mean i volunteer at elementary schools as a tutor and at the library, but im not helping people in anyway way. ive learned though that something that helps calm anxiety and thoughts like that is to stay REALLY busy, like clean the house and walk the dog, go for a jog, make a sculpture. just stay crazy busy and you'll think about it less.
Everybody understands the concept of "good" differently. If you want to think that feeling good after helping someone or doing a kind deed is selfish, well, no one can make you think otherwise, because this is not a matter of perception, but of heart. No one can take away the feelings of selfishness, most probably because you already know all the things people will put here: it's not selfish, you're overthinking things, etc. But think about it this way: better to feel good by doing a good deed, than by belittling others or doing things that are much more obviously selfish and goal-oriented. Everybody gets a bit high after helping, but it's important to remeber WHY you do it. And if it happens to bring you closer to yourself, then why not? It's precisely as the saying goes: "Help me help you".