written by OL and edited by MR ©
Many people will say that kindness is a manner which demonstrates itself in proceedings. But what is kindness? It is the quality of being generous, friendly and considerate, to name just a few. Another aspect is that you worry for the feelings of others and that you feel their pain along with them. It is also said that kindness tries to figure out what the situation is and produce a better outcome. Kindness shows empathy and compassion for those who are in pain, and support for those who are attempting to help those who are in need. Being kind is a very important way of giving some significance to our own lives as well as the lives of others who are around us and those that we don’t even know. Being kind also gives us a chance to interact with others better, and also to be a positive force in other people’s lives. Its true source is deep within us, and while some people are naturally kind, it’s something that everyone can develop by applying themselves to learning what it means to be kind and then by actually being kind in different situations.
But what is kindness really? Is it an attitude or an emotion? Well, it’s an attitude that is demonstrated by having tolerant and non-judgmental behavior, a pleasing disposition and a deep respect for others. It also demonstrates itself when an individual shows courtesy. Just because an individual doesn’t hurt anyone else doesn’t necessarily make them kind. People that are kind freely go out of their way to help others, with no expectation of recognition. Their only motivation is the desire to perform deeds of kindness because of the joy that it brings them to do so. Kindness is love in action. Humans are very capable and many people can do a lot of things without the need of anyone else’s help. But what about those who need a little assistance? It is always best to be helpful and show kindness so that they too can become strong once again and go on to help others.
You can achieve this goal by first helping someone who is in need. It doesn’t matter if you are shy or scared to help – try and try again because once you get the hang of it, you will have no trouble doing it again for that person or for someone else that comes along. Showing someone kindness helps you to better yourself and sometimes free yourself from negative feelings such as jealously, hate and manipulation of others. Instead, it helps you to be more appreciative of them.
If you’ve been abused by others either when you were growing up or during a relationship or marriage that you’ve now left, you may find it difficult to trust people initially. So try working with animals instead. Learn to love and trust again by helping to restore the trust and faith of a cat or dog that has been neglected or abused. Then move on to helping humans after that. Some people will think that it’s okay to ask for something in return when assisting others, but that is the wrong expectation to have when you help someone who is in need. You should never ask for anything in return because kindness comes with no strings attached and no conditions whatsoever. Giving is just for giving without the expectation of anything in return.
Give because it is what you want to do, not because you have plans to get something from the person that you are being kind to. Don’t be kind because you want to manipulate them into giving you what you want, but give because you care and because you want to help someone. You should also never be kind if your intentions are bad. Let’s say, for example, that you hate and want to destroy an individual. Don’t attempt to feign kindness when the truth of how you really feel towards him or her is that you hate them, because that is not kindness but rather, deceit.
Many people will make the sad mistake of trying to be kind to others while at the same time not focusing on being kind to their very own selves. Some of this can come from not liking a certain part of themselves but it is much more complicated than that, because it’s the source in the inability to know you better. Unfortunately, when you don’t feel rock solid within yourself, your kindness to others risks falling into the deceitful type because you are likely to fold under the pressure of keeping up appearances, and then the real you will show its ugly face. Once you know yourself well enough, you will be able to see what causes you pain and conflict and it will give you the strength to tackle your contradictions and inconsistencies. You’ll be able to work on things about yourself that you’re not pleased with. In turn, self-knowledge helps to prevent you from dumping your own negativity on other people, and enables you to treat other people with love and kindness.
You have to take time to become more aware of yourself and then use what you have learned to be helpful and show kindness to yourself as well as to others, always remembering that everyone has a weakness. So in other words, your personal self is being dealt with lightly rather than fueling your every need to project your own hurt and pain onto others. You must also avoid treating the time that is taken to become more aware of your own desires and restrictions as an act of selfishness. Naming your actions as selfish is far from the truth of the matter. The time you take to observe yourself is a critical factor in being able to reach out to other people with great strength and awareness. Ask yourself, “What does it mean to be kinder to myself?” The solution to this question will include things like ‘self-observation with the intention of discontinuing negative thought processes’, and ‘ceasing all repetitive derogatory name calling about myself within my own mind.’ Other things include taking more care of your health and appearance, and taking time out of stressful situations to enjoy the world of nature and the social company of friends and family.
Showing kindness does not mean that you have to give of yourself to other people all the time. Sometimes all that another needs is someone to talk to – a friend. Once you learn to be a friend you can really understand kindness. You cannot help anyone when you feel like you can’t trust yourself so you must learn to believe in yourself and you will be able to show more kindness in your world, and in the end others will show it back to you. There is nothing greater than the thought of giving and seeing the one you helped flourish like a tree that by growing tall and reaching the sky it shows its appreciation of having got what it needed to survive and go on to thrive.