Having had the opportunity to travel and see the world a little allowed me to observe and come to conclusion the key factor that makes a country progressive. I arrived at the conclusion that Education is the main factor which is what everything else is built upon.
Self control is an integral part of society. What makes a family? People. What makes a company? People. What makes a country? Again, people!
During my travels, I had seen a fair share of clean and dirty streets, courteous and ignorant commuters, and the list goes on. To make sense of my observations, I normally look at how the people carry themselves in general. In some countries, it is a natural reaction to give up one’s seat for the elderly while in others, most are oblivious to their surroundings let alone offer kindness.
I do not know about you but I believe that our conscience are shaped and nurtured through our upbringing. If we grew up learning good values and have seen such values being put into practice, most likely such actions will rub onto us and in turn, we will practice them ourselves.
So where are we exposed to such values? At school and at home are my guesses. We sometimes refer to them as formal and informal education.
When I visit the 1st world countries, I observe that majority of the people are very polite and courteous. For example, whenever I walked into a retail outlet, I am approached with a smile and “How may I help you?” And if the outlet does not have what I am looking for, the shop assistants will usually offer to suggest alternatives.
In contrast, back home, I am always greeted with a “Yes?” and a puzzled face with a mouth that goes, “I don’t know” when I walk into a retail store looking for an item of desire.
I can only conclude that a generally polite and clean country is the reflection of its citizens that have great appreciation for courteousy and are civic minded enough to discard waste at the appropriate places that have been provided.
Likewise, a retail shop assistant with a clear focus to help his or her company to make a profit will always try to make a sale or at least find a way to make a sale in the most pleasant and polite manner. It is always how one makes the customer feel that makes or breaks the deal. If I am treated with respect and appreciation, most likely I will feel obligated to return that same treatment one deserves.
It all boils down to each individual to practice self-control and self-regulation. Collectively it contributes and resonates across the entire society and country. I believe that is what makes a first world country, a first world country – a place that generally have a good conscience.
And how do we achieve that? We raise our children well and show them good examples to begin with.
We truly live in trying times especially this past weekend when the world read in horror the acts of terror across the globe.
If only we all have self control and able to act in good/clear conscience, we will have a better world for ourselves and our future generation.
We pray for PEACE and LOVE.