The middle of the week is a funny place, it’s too far away from last weekend to still be feeling relaxed and too far away from next weekend to be excited. Yep, it’s a funny day indeed. However, this week is a very special Wednesday, because it is World Kindness Day! Did you even know it was a thing? Isn’t it wonderful? I for one, think it is a fabulous day, which is why I have signed the petition for it to be officially recognised on the 13th November every year; you can add your signature here.
Imagine how different our communities, towns, and countries would be if people were kinder to one another. Imagine if kindness spread like the Autumn leaves on the wind. I truly believe that kindness breeds kindness, but what is kindness? Now that is a very good question.
To me, kindness is not just doing something for someone, though that is definitely an element, a big element. For me it is also, being polite, being tolerant and being patient with others. Which is easier said than done. Let’s face it, we’ve all become somewhat insular. Kindness is not prevalent in our societies. We live in communities where we don’t know who lives two doors down from us, let alone who lives round the corner. So what do we do? Where do we start?
We retrain ourselves, and that includes being kind to ourselves. We need to be patient with ourselves. You don’t have to go out with the sole intention of being kind to someone. Goodness knows if you do that, then don’t manage it, you’ll end up feeling awful. I believe it’s a case of going out and looking at the world in a different way. Listen to what people are really saying, not what you want to hear. Look at what is going on around you. Kindness could be something as simple as picking up a toy a toddler has dropped and handing it back, or letting someone in the queue behind you, with less items, go ahead of you. It could be exercising patience when someone is driving you nuts jigging their leg and making everything around them vibrate; yes it is annoying, but the likelihood is, they don’t even know they’re doing it. Or, it could be tolerance of our differences. Just because someone’s views don’t match your own, doesn’t mean it is acceptable to sling verbal mud at them (something we are seeing a lot of in the current election campaign).
We cannot make the world a kinder place over night, but we can all do small things. A quick text to someone you’ve not seen for a while, or buying an extra coffee for someone at work. Learning why, someone thinks the way the do, rather than judging, or choosing to use kind, helpful words when you really don’t feel like it. And don’t forget you. Be kind to yourself. Exercise self care, because you deserve your kindness as much as others do.