Are you kind?
On the surface, many of us will say, “Yes, of course I am.”
But what does kindness look like?
Well, it doesn’t look like a majority of the exchanges on social media. Or most news reports.
It doesn’t look like road rage. Or insulting others.
It doesn’t look like putting yourself before all others, or pissing and moaning because someone hasn’t bowed and scraped before you.
We can do better.
You know, some days I hate the words coming out of my mouth. Why do I act the exact opposite of the person I wish to be?
One minute, I’m trying to curb my truck driver language (apologies to truckers with clean vocabularies) and the next I’m spouting off like an indignant New York cabbie.
Man, I have a long way to go, for sure. And I know I’m not alone.
So here are ten ideas for showing kindness to others (despite our tendencies to get in our own way):
When making a call to a business, try smiling as you speak. It will come through in your voice.
If you see someone struggling, go lend a hand. (i.e. mother with stroller battling a door, person dropping a package, etc.)
Treat retail personnel and food service workers with respect and dignity by giving them your full attention (goodbye cellphone) and then thanking them for their help.
Leave a buck behind for someone to find.
Say please and thank you. Always. To everyone.
Purchase a gift card to a common fast-food establishment and give it to a homeless person who is begging on the street.
Volunteer for a single day of community service or a worthy cause. Helping out at a soup kitchen or charity event can be life-changing. And you’ll probably come back for more, too.
Instead of giving the stink-eye to parents with unruly kids in a restaurant, choose to give them a supportive smile.
Leave a random encouraging note on a stranger’s car. Someone once left me a note that I now keep in my office that says, “Wanted to let you know, you matter.” The writer may have been an angel or simply a person who must have known I carried a heavy soul that day. Wow.
Martin Luther once said, “God put fingers on our hand for the money to slide through them so He can give us more. Whatever a person gives away, God will reimburse.” Find a great charity and make a monthly donation. Someone somewhere needs your help.
You and me–we can change the world, one act of kindness at a time.
Thanks for reading!
Susan J. Anderson
Foxy Writer Chick