Kindness: A Dying Trait

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This is going to be a rant post, I’ll be honest. Nothing makes me crazier than when I see someone approach my desk at work and I ask them “How are you?” only to get the response, “I’m just waiting for someone”. FOR EXAMPLE.

In Toronto especially, people are very defensive and simply can’t believe that you care how they are doing. It’s saddening, but true. In general, Canadians are prided on being very friendly people. I’m not suggesting that this is untrue, however I do think that Torontonians (especially) tend to get caught up in day-to-day life, and unfortunately, kindness is becoming a dying trait in my opinion. Women are especially bad for this. NOT ALWAYS. But often, women hate on each other because of jealousy and other petty things. We are more powerful as women when we build each other up, not bring each other down. There is room for all of us to be beautiful, smart and amazing.

A few examples: I took the Go Train to work not long ago during the morning rush-hour traffic. I watched as dozens of business men (and women, but mostly men) pushed their way past a little old woman (she had to be at least 80), until she was at the very back of the line. No one looked at her, smiled, or offered to help. I spoke to her afterwards and she said she would just take the next train. I can’t even explain how infuriated this interaction made me. I know people are busy and have places to be, but COME ON. Another time, I was doing my shopping at the grocery store, and while the cashier scanned my items, not once did she look at me, smile, or say hello. Literally the only human interaction we had was, “How are you paying?”. Come. On. People. These are just two small examples, but I know that we all see this type of behaviour far too often.

I definitely know I am far from perfect, but I do ALWAYS try to be a kind human being because it is the least we can do for each other. If I can brighten someones day just the tiniest bit, then that is what I will do. I think we could all benefit by spending a bit of time being more conscious of how we interact with one another- myself included. If everyone made even a 10% effort to be kinder to others, imagine how much of a happier world we would live in. I have compiled a list of things you can do to be KIND in a world that needs it.

  • Give someone a compliment
  • Hold the door open for people behind you
  • Pay for the person in line behind you in the drive-thru
  • Leave a generous tip for your server
  • Donate clothing to charity
  • Send someone flowers to their workplace
  • Write a nice review for someone who provided you with great service (or even better, tell their manager)
  • Let someone go before you at the grocery store if they only have one or two items
  • Tell the people in your life how much they mean to you and mean it
  • Volunteer
  • SMILE AT OTHER PEOPLE!
  • Listen to others without interrupting
  • Try your best to never engage in gossip
  • Learn the names of your colleagues and use them often
  • Lend someone a book
  • Ask someone about their day and actually listen to their response
  • Bring meals for the homeless
  • Always say “please” and “thank you”
  • On a crowded bus, always offer up your seat to anyone elderly, pregnant, or someone who could use the seat more than you
  • Say “I’m sorry” when you are wrong and mean it

Remember, as important as it is to be kind to others, it is even more important to be kind to yourself. Practice positive self-talk and affirmations, rather than putting yourself down and focusing on solely your flaws (which we ALL have).

I love the quote, “Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about.” Truer words have never been spoken. You have no idea what your colleagues, friends, or even neighbours deal with on a day-to-day basis. A simple act of kindness, a pleasant smile, or a compliment could literally change the entire course of their day. I hope you all enjoy your week ahead and please be kind 🙂

xo

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“Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible.”-Dalai Lama