While I remind myself to always be kind, I must confess that it’s something I struggle with at times.
Remember, that phrase ‘Don’t take my kindness for weakness’? I’m afraid to be taken advantage of. There are plenty of scammers who prey on people’s kindness. I remember, these little children (probably part of a syndicate) who would turn up in the evenings in school uniform and accost passersby with the story that they had lost their bus money. I helped them once, until I realized that it was a regular performance. But you see why I am sometimes reluctant to help with money, unless I know someone?
Always Be Kind
Kindness is not just about giving or helping. Kindness is also in the way we think about others and perceive situations.
Terry Hershey tells this story:
A young couple moved into a new neighborhood. The next morning while they were eating breakfast, the young woman saw her neighbor hanging the washing outside.
“That laundry is not very clean; she doesn’t know how to wash correctly. Perhaps she needs better laundry soap.”
Her husband looked on, remaining silent. Every time her neighbor hung her washing out to dry, the young woman made the same comments.
A month later, the woman was surprised to see a nice clean wash on the line and said to her husband, “Look, she’s finally learned how to wash correctly. I wonder who taught her this?”
The husband replied, “I got up early this morning and cleaned our windows.”
Ah! How often I’ve been that young woman, jumping to conclusions, judging, being presumtious! If I had only viewed a situation or a person through the lens of kindness, my thoughts, actions and response would have been so different.
“Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible.” – Dalai Lama
In October, I started writing a series called 31 Days about Living A Principle Driven Life. Since I wasn’t able to complete it then, I’m doing so now. You can follow my posts here.