Perhaps one or more of these might help.
Being good makes you feel better
Giving usually does feel at least as good as receiving. When I feel resentful that others don’t return my kindnesses, I try to remember that goodness is its own reward. True, we may feel a moment of revengeful pleasure in doing something hurtful but that pleasure is usually replaced by longer-lasting self-loathing.
Being nice isn’t the same as being good
It’s easy to fool ourselves into thinking we’re good people just because we’re nice. In fact, a person can be preternaturally cheery, positive, ever offering a toothy, “How ya doin’?” yet do some pretty awful things.They might even use niceness so others won’t suspect them of any nefariousness or gives them a pass on their poor work performance. Nice isn’t the same as good.
If we do want to behave better, we need to be particularly vigilant in these situations. Easier said than done.
Of course, it’s far easier to urge high-mindedness than to practice it. So special kudos to those who can.
Marty Nemko was named “The Bay Area’s Best Career Coach” by the San Francisco Bay Guardian and he enjoys a 96 percent client-satisfaction rate. In addition to his articles here on PsychologyToday.com, many more of Marty Nemko's writings are archived on www.martynemko.com. Of Nemko's seven books, the most relevant to readers of this blog is How to Do Life: What They Didn’t Teach You in School. His bio is on Wikipedia.