What exactly is kindness?
Kindness is manifested in acts of generosity, consideration, and concern for others without any anticipated reciprocation, reward, or any kind of response. It beholds the warmth of a hug that the world needs today. It comforts other people by providing them the presence of another human being in its truest form and value. It gives life a more sensible and purposeful meaning. The world needs kindness now more than ever.
Everyone may have been directly or indirectly affected by the challenges brought about by the great Coronavirus. Certainly, these allowed moments of vulnerability to climb up the surface and severely make an impact on the conduct of our daily lives. It is times like this that we are in dire need of a mental lift to get things back on track, see a silver lining, and make a change not only in our lives but also in that of others.
In KFF (2021) it was revealed that the pandemic and the resulting economic crisis aggressively affected many people’s mental health and created barriers for people already suffering from mental illnesses and substance use disorders. As such, it is understood that the roots came from people’s experiences in situations that push their mental health further down like isolation, job loss, and loss of a loved one. We have seen how social media turned into an obituary of unsuccessful COVID battles, how businessmen and entrepreneurs broke down, how employees lost their bread and butter, and friends and relatives facing serious illnesses. It was a sight painful to the eyes to see. Kindness may not address these issues directly but it can definitely help others as much as helping yourself. The world poses an opportunity for you to do it and it is rewarding for you.
Kindness is for the mentally strong.
When you ask most people about how they foster kindness, they would say simple things in a practical discourse like opening a door for someone, passing on an item as a favor, and saying yes to a request to lend which are suggestive only of rudimentary principles. Of course, there is a deeper meaning associated with kindness and it is only for the mentally strong. This contradicts the belief that being kind is tantamount to being soft. In order to fully understand how kindness works, one must not equate it with weakness. The kind person is not someone who others can easily take advantage of and sees often surrendering to a fight and avoiding confrontations. Those who see kindness in this way probably have little value towards manners and character. Therefore, it is only for the intellectual and the morally upright. It is not easy because the logic is that if only it was, we would see a lot of it.
Kindness is a decision.
Dr. Wayne Dyer, a world-renowned author, and father of motivation, mentioned that if we have to choose between being right and being kind, choose to be kind. Kindness is a mindset. It believes neither is right nor wrong. Our insecurities, more so our ego, are always threatened by being wrong and this just puts our self, values, and principles in question at dimming light. It has often been one’s defense mechanism to provoke conflict by establishing and imposing a solid image of what is right and insisting on how the right is the opposite of wrong — a useless exchange, as realizations do not always come right up. By doing this, we are putting ourselves in a situation that might entail regret after the heat of emotions has finally worn off. These contrast the beautiful process of kindness as such practices certainly only showed being unkind. Remember, only our egos care and give importance to the demarcations and distinctions between right and wrong. Never the soul nor the self.
In this battle of the heart and mind, choose the heart that is always forgiving and finds apologies unnecessary, accepting of the person, and acknowledges the need for resolution as these are fundamental for you to move forward and beyond. The heart that is gold and kind does not always aim to be right but to be human, non judgemental, and withholding grudges. It is not all the time that being right is right because in the grand scheme of things, and with a little reality fact-check, it might be unimportant.
There are so many parents out there who raise and reward their kids to be smart and this has formed the culture of valuing the concept of rightness over kindness. It does not say in the books that we can only be either kind or smart but when the situation calls for you to choose between either, choose kindness not for righteousness but for peace and peace of mind. When you choose to be kind rather than right, you can create ripples towards the hearts of the people in your community which can lead to the creation of more kind and compassion-responsive individuals.
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