Kindness is a well known word. Many folks define kindness differently. Kindness is simple. It’s something we can all add to our lives. Here are ten acts of kindness to help make the world a better place:
1. Patience is Truly a Virtue
Every single day we deal with situations that require us to be patient. We practice patience without realizing it. For example, imagine you're at the DMV (we all know how long the DMV line can be). You get your ticket, B41. When you look at the screen to see how far your number is, your heart sinks. They're barely on B11. When you finally reach the lady behind the desk, after an hour of waiting, you notice that she is moving slowly. Some might say, can you speed it up because I have places to be, but before you react, remember to be patient. Consider what the person at the desk may have been dealing with throughout their day. What can you do to help their day be a better one? Another example is when your food is taking too long at a restaurant. As a waitress, I notice customers often losing their patience. Consider why your order may be taking longer than usual. Perhaps the kitchen is backed up, the restaurant could be understaffed, etc. Service professionals will appreciate your patience.
2. Please and Thank you
This one is simple. Say it when you can. Please and thank you goes a long way in any situation.
A smile can go a long way. So, smile more. You can brighten up someone’s day, even your own. Studies have shown that smiling can make you feel better.
4. Stay in the Moment
Being present has become rare. Most people are always on their cell phones. Next time, when you're at the cash register and the cashier is ringing you up, make sure to have eye contact and be present. When the cashier says hello, how are you? try to give a genuine response. And maybe ask them how their day is going. When you have a chance, take a moment to stop whatever you're doing and just look around. Try to appreciate everything around you. While you're looking around, you might notice how many people are texting and walking, texting and driving, texting while eating with other people, etc. You might feel better knowing you're not doing the same.
5. Suspend Judgement
Judgment is part of most people’s lives. We scroll through our social media, hit the like button, and at times we ignore the things we don’t like. Our whole society is based on judgment. It’s considered part of human nature. Suspending judgment can make all the difference. For example, your best friend might ask your opinion on a blouse that you might not love. You can easily say, “well, that’s a very ugly top Liz,” or you can say “as long as you feel good wearing it that is what matters.” I learned to suspend judgment from my best friend. Whenever I make a mistake, she always tells me “Frshta, I am not here to judge you, I am here to be your friend and support you no matter what.” So next time, someone tells you something you don’t agree with, remember to be kind and remember why you're there.
6. Gossip Hurts
Gossip hurts. Gossip leads to so many issues in various environments, such as work and schools. The world will be a kinder place if we just don’t spread gossip. Even if someone expresses their feelings to you, just leave it between you two. Don’t spread it because it will keep the tension going and make the situation better. I learned this life skill at my job. Situations always happen but I have learned the best way to avoid making the scenario worse is not spread the gossip. It’s like spilling oil on an already burning fire. This act of kindness will help with bullying and mental health illnesses. Also, have you ever felt a weight of emotions on your shoulders because of gossip? Practice letting it go by focusing on positive things in your life. Free yourself from other negative words.
7. Give Someone a Call or a Text
A simple call or text can make a positive difference in someone’s day. Just simply wishing someone to have a beautiful day can mean a lot. It will bring a smile and positivity to their day.
8. Be Kind to your environment.
To keep our world safe, we must learn to be kind to it. Some ways to be kind to the world is to throw away your trash, recycle, avoid plastic and so much more. I used to buy a plastic bottle of water every single day. It was hurting my pocket and it was hurting the environment. When I realized I was hurting the environment, I purchased a hydro flask. It was a one time purchase. It was a good investment. My water is now always cold, and I’ve saved money and time because I no longer wait in line to buy water. So, say goodbye to warm plastic bottles! Also, if you have to use plastic, there are always recycling options. Sometimes the simplest thing we can do is just clean up after ourselves. So, please, throw away your trash.
9. Be Kind to Animals
I love animals and I know not everyone does, and that's okay. Although we might fear certain animals, we can still be gentle to them. For example, if you see a stray kitten, take it to the shelter and save its life. If you see a bird with a broken wing, take it to the shelter. In my home, we have three bird baths in our front yard with seeds for the birds to eat. It is an act of kindness for these beautiful creatures! Another act of kindness is to foster animals. There are so many animals at the shelter that don’t have homes. Fostering or adopting an animal is only for those ready to commit to such a responsibility. A pet can be a full-time job and you can’t just get rid of them when they aren’t cute and small anymore. Next time you see a stray animal, think of how you can help make its life a little better.
10. Be Kind to Yourself
Be kind to yourself. Life is hard. There are obstacles every single day. So, take a day off when you need it. Try long baths and a massage once in a while or go to the beach! Try different relaxing methods. Be kind to yourself! Self-care is so important. We spend so much time working and taking care of responsibilities that sometimes we forget to just take care of ourselves.
Thanks for reading!