As I stepped out to go for a run last week, I was greeted with heavy rain and grey skies. I looked up to the sky and a beautiful rainbow looked right back at me. It reminded me of a quote by the late Maya Angelou ‘Be a rainbow in someone else’s cloud’. For weeks now I have been wanting to write about kindness but have been just too busy too. Seeing this magnificent rainbow was a sign ‘Write your blog already’!
Too often we go through life not realising that we are not the only ones carrying some sought of sorrow, grief, hurt or struggle despite what is portrayed on the outside. We are all wired for struggle of some sought, but it is how we deal with our struggles and who we surround ourselves with that helps us get through whatever it may be. It could be as simple as having a bad day to being stressed at home or work or losing a loved one. Receiving an act of kindness from someone can change your day, your feelings and your outlook on life.
A few months ago I went to an appointment. As I went to pay the lady she turned to me and said ‘No, not today’. I was taken aback and I responded by saying ‘There is no way I am walking out of here without paying! Why’? She simply said I am doing this because I want to show you how much I appreciate you as a friend and because you too are kind to me and you are a good friend to me. You always listen to me and show me how much you care about me’. Until today I am grateful not for not paying but for the kind words this person said to me and how appreciated it made me feel. I truly believe when you show kindness through words and deeds you will experience all the richness that joy and happiness offer. The more kindness you show to others the more happiness you will manifest in your life. They most definitely go hand in hand.
I am sure as I have, you all have encountered unkindness at some stage in your life. If need be, distance yourself from these people and don’t hate them. Instead try and help them, be kind to them and know that underneath the hurt and unkindness lays someone that is hurting from either their partner, parent/s or because of someone that did something hurtful to them. There are some of us that will remain unkind and mean and there are others that will grow because of past circumstances, we move on and ultimately refuse to play the victim. Just focus on yourself and what you wish to contribute to this world. Do not ever because someone is mean or unkind to you think’I will be meaner and I will be unkind too’. It will manifest nothing but negativity and unhappiness in your own life.
At times I see people searching for happiness through books, cars, food, shoes, holidays, glamour, the amount of money in their bank account. I have been there. There is nothing wrong with wanting these or having these but think about why you want and need these things. What is the end result you desire? I used to think I would find happiness in shopping but did I? Maybe for a month or so and then I would search for the next pair of shoes to make me happy. It was a vicious cycle which left me with tons of shoes and clothes with tags still on them all in the pursuit of happiness. We see a new car on a television ad that is marketed with a happy family or a happy couple and we think, oh if I buy a new car, I/we might be happy. Or we see a man or woman with new shoes or trendy clothes and we think Oh if I can look like that then surely I would be happy too. How very wrong we are.
Something I remember to this day was my obsession with Christian Louboutin shoes. I was so in love with his shoes that every time I would shop online I would go through all his shoe collection thinking I NEEDED a pair. I would see how glamorous, thin and happy these women looked in their Christian Louboutin shoes. Eventually I gathered the courage to buy a $900 pair of his shoes. My parcel arrived and I sat down on my bedroom floor and opened it up in anticipation. Waiting for the feeling of happiness and joy to wash over me. I remember thinking to myself ‘I have just spent $900 on shoes, what is wrong with me’? Two days later I returned them. This is not to say I still wouldn’t love a pair of his shoes, but that moment made me realise the shoes I thought would make me happy most certainly did not and that I had bought them for all the wrong reasons. I read a quote about Christian Louboutin shoes that states ‘Shoes transform your language and attitude. They lift you up physically and emotionally’. A pair of shoes can do that FOREVER? Happiness is quiet simple. You will find happiness by being a loving, caring, KIND, grateful and humble human being. It is in your control. It does not need to be bought and cannot be bought. It just needs to be practiced through deed and truth daily.
At this point in my life, especially as I get older, I try each and every day to be a better person, to be the best human I can be whether it be as a stranger on the street, a mother, a daughter, a friend, a wife or a sister. I feel that I want to contribute to making this world a kinder place to live in. The world as it stands today has enough hate, negativity and hurt but not enough compassion, love and kindness. I want to live the kind of life that when I am no longer on this earth, people will say ‘God Bless Her. She was a good human being’.
The ways that I show kindness towards others can be by asking people how they feel when something tugs at me telling me they might not be ok today or by giving them a hug or by just listening to them vent. Kindness is when I ask my husband how his day was and if I could make him a cup of coffee. Kindness is when I share something I have made or read with a friend. Kindness is when I help those close to me wholeheartedly without wanting anything in return. True acts of kindness are not profitable but let me tell you, it will feed and satisfy your soul beyond your expectations. Finally what I would like to leave you all with and if you do not do this already is to try the following:
– Practice at least two acts of kindness each day. Remember, kindness is not profitable but is rather food for the soul.
– Write down the acts of kindness people have done for you and be appreciative and grateful for it and give back in return.
If you could just try the aforementioned and if you are already on this path just keep going and watch and see how much happier you will be and what goodness kindness will manifest in your life.