November 13th will be World Kindness Day –
How will you be kind-hearted the whole year through?
I wrote about how Kindness is the recipe for keeping romantic relationships alive, The Most Valuable Way to a Happy and Successful Relationship, and it appears it is perhaps one of the best ways to be happy in all our relationships – whether they are life-long or just passing.
In Charles Kingsley’s tale of the Water-babies, Mrs Do-As-You-Would-be-Done-By was a lovely lady who treated the babies as she wished to be treated, with unconditional love and treats. In contrast, Mrs Be-Done-By-As-You-Did was hard and sharp and treated the babies as they treated others, until they learned the lesson of treating others well. Which would you prefer to have around?
We have turned into a society of people who wish to do whatever we want without consequences and that includes how we treat those around us. We need to reassess our ethics. We can fight for and rise to catch our dreams, we can work to succeed, and we can push ourselves, but we don’t need to do it at the expense of others. We can fight to help others reach their potential, help them to succeed, and support those who need it. We can work together, and kindness and compassion are paramount to achieving that.
Kindness is a base response, it’s automatic, it’s a default we should all have.
Kindness doesn’t need explaining. If you ask any child, especially small children, how you should treat others they will almost always say with kindness. Be kind. If they get it, why don’t we?
Kindness covers so many things – when you search the thesaurus you come up with a plethora of words, including: affection – altruism – benevolence – courtesy – decency – compassion – gentleness – goodwill – goodness – grace – graciousness – hospitality – humanity – patience – sweetness – sympathy – tenderness – tolerance – understanding – unselfishness – charity – consideration – heart – helpfulness – kindliness – philanthropy – tact – thoughtfulness.
Let’s allow our hearts to pick one of these words, one of these qualities, and put it into action in our lives…
Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word,
a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring,
all of which have the potential to turn a life around. – Leo Buscaglia
What are you going to do today…and tomorrow?
Make Kindness your built-in default.