This I Believe

Laura - Sunset, South Carolina
Entered on February 7, 2007
Age Group: 30 - 50

I am a humanitarian relief worker with a focus on alleviating poverty or illness from natural disasters or conflict in other countries. I recently came back from Afghanistan where I worked in many situations that caused me to struggle with or challenge my beliefs every day. Working in what I do, it was important for me to figure out what I believe in. I was fortunate to have an ethics professor in graduate school that made our class write an essay on our personal beliefs. In my essay I came up with my own “belief points” that I keep in my pocket. Whenever I have a personal crisis, a work problem or I am stuck on issue, I look at these belief points then I make a decision.

– A higher power that gives me choices in life and from these choices I chose my path or destiny. I can choose to be happy everyday or sad, it’s all up to me.

– Everything happens for a reason.

– Family and friends are very important to me in my everyday life no matter how near or far.

– My ego prevents me from getting what I want and sometimes from being good to people.

– Along with ego greed prevents me from being good people. I have to remember I come in with nothing and go out with nothing

– What comes around goes around. If you do something bad that it will come back to you some how, how else can I choose to try and do the right thing?

– Most people are good and that every person has a different perspective that comes from differing environments, beliefs, and experiences. Appreciation of what people have to offer me is important and I can basically learn something from everyone. Everyone has something to offer whether I like that person or not.

– Issues are not black and white but gray. I may think I am sure about some issue, but something will most definitely come along eventually to challenge or completely change that thought. It’s ok to change direction.

– Learning is a gift and luxury so it is very important to me to never stop learning and to teach to others who are interested what I know.

– I should treat others how I would like to be treated.

What I am most sure about from my experiences around the world is that beliefs can separate people or bring them together. From beliefs there are negative consequences such as suffering, illness, poverty, and wars. Beliefs can also bring about positive affects such as trust, respect, love and peace. Beliefs are crucial to living. I continually try to gain meaning and learn from my own beliefs points. I have found that almost everything I do affects someone or something so knowing that I should try to be thoughtful about what I do.