I love people who try to be soft. I think about it a lot. I used to be an asshole when I was younger, I was sexist and racist, definitely shades of queerphobia (a lot of interalised shame about my own queerness). It was all about being edgy and tired of the world. I remember when I looked what I was saying and doing and went "no, actually, I am a good person, this is not what good people say and do."
I love people who have stared themselves down and gone "No."
I think it's always going to be hard over riding that knee jerk response of learn behaviour society and certain people instil in you. And that nagging fear of being a bad person deep down.
But goodness is a series of choices, kindness is a series of choices. Being soft is waking up and looking at your younger self and going "I know why you did this, but no more." and then walking away from that. As often as you can. And I love people who manage to do that.
@Corvusheart I think for me there was a degree of odd rebelliousness about the process of ditching a cynical personality - a realisation that cynicism was big and dominant in society and I either had to embrace it, get crushed by it, or fight it.
And fighting it seemed to involve a lot more cute fluffy animals and nice things.
Here is a mountain beaver. They're not related to beavers but they chew on trees all the same and are pretty cool. :)
@Corvusheart I used to be exactly like that. A lot of it was manipulative parents/family trying to imprint their awful values on me (a nine-year-old should not be getting caught in school with *that* kind of vocabulary). It took a very long time to figure out that the world I was stuck in wasn't at all how normal, well-adjusted people behave and a long time to unlearn it.
My only regret is that I can't afford to physically distance myself from those people as much as I'd like.