In a World Full of Strife…
Are you feeling as weary as I am? The world seems to be going absolutely insane. I have seen wars, riots, nuclear threats, and all sorts of challenging world things in my lifetime. But I can’t help but feel that right now, the chaos and madness seem to be accelerating.
I know a lot of us are feeling isolated, scared, and at times angry. But it’s essential to not take our stress, grief, and anger out on each other. We’ve truly got to dig deep right now and try to find some common sense to all of this. We need to stay strong and believe that the world will get through whatever global shift we seem to be going through. The pendulum always swings in wild arcs before it comes back to the center.
Support for one another can be offered in many different ways, but one of the simplest things you can do is to show those you come in contact with a bit of kindness. Being kind lifts our own spirits and lifts others’ spirits as well. It’s a win/win.
When we are kind to others, they are inspired to show kindness to those they encounter and on and on, the kindness goes. YOU can be instrumental in starting a kindness trend in your own local area. The more of us that do this, the more light we can have in the world right now fighting this intruding darkness.
Kindness can be easier than you think. Here are some ways you can be kinder to your fellow human being:
Mind Your Manners
It disturbs me to see younger people move around the world completely entitled with a lack of common courtesy. What happened to saying “please” and “Thank You?”
Right out of the Urban Dictionary!
I have interviewed thousands of people over the years from all walks of life, and a thank you note or an email to say thank you goes a long way.
On a recent trip to Austin, Texas, we interviewed many scientists and health care folks from Gen Z to Gen X for our clinical department. One young lady stood out because she came to the interview on time and dressed professionally with a binder for each executive. Our names and titles were on the binder, with her resume nicely designed and easy to read. Attached to the resume was a pamphlet outlining her work ethic, her goals, and what characteristics she will bring to the position to be successful. And attached to the folder was a personalized handmade thank you note. She followed up the next day with gratitude and thanks for our time and stated that she would be very grateful for the opportunity to work with our company.
A resume may get you a phone screen but how you act and what you do from that moment on will make or break your chances of getting the job. It is pretty apparent and troubling that applying for a job, writing a professional resume, choosing suitable attire to wear to an interview, and presentation and interviewing skills are not being taught in college. If you are not getting hired, reread this section, or reach out to me for some advice!
It is so important to say “Thank You” you express gratitude for a service someone else provided to you. Just saying “Thank You” lets others know that you value them and what they provide. Send a thank you today to someone you forgot to thank. You know who they are!
Have you ever interacted with a baby? All you have to do is smile at them and they smile back. It’s as if humans are hardwired to smile when we see smiles. And when we smile, we feel better. Literally.
Try it right now. Feel the kind of mood you are in right now. Just take notice of it. Okay, now… SMILE. Smile big. I don’t know the exact mechanics, but smiling seems to send a signal to our brains that not only is everything alright in our world, everything is GREAT!
YOU can give this gift to others; you can make them actually, literally feel better by simply smiling.
Call a Loved One
We have all gotten so used to sending quick emails and text messages to one another. When was the last time you picked up that phone and called a friend or family member you haven’t spoken to in a while? No digital correspondence will ever take the place of having a heart-to-heart conversation over the phone.
Lend a Helping Hand
How hard is it to stand there a little longer to hold the door open for someone? To help someone carry their groceries to their car? To hold an umbrella over someone’s head whose hands are full or who’s on crutches. Small acts of kindness can absolutely change someone’s day. I can remember small things people did for me 30 years ago. That’s how much of an impact this kindness made in my life!
We all have a strong need to be heard and validated. But in today’s busy world, with smartphones in front of everyone’s face, it’s easy to feel like we’re not really connecting with others; like we’re not really being heard.
When a friend, family member or complete stranger is speaking with you, be sure to give them your full attention. Make eye contact. Ask questions. Validate their feelings. This is one of the most loving things you can do for someone. I truly believe this.
Feed Those You Love and Appreciate
Everyone loves getting a treat or a surprise that is just for them. Send a fruit basket, bake some cookies and send them to someone you haven’t seen in a while or deliver them to a neighbor who is struggling right now. You could also take some home-cooked food to your local firehouse to show your appreciation. I sent my friend a beautiful gift basket yesterday for her birthday, and to say hi! I realized that I hadn’t seen her in over two years, and she turned the BIG 50!
These are very simple acts of kindness. And they’ll make you feel great, too. As the world continues to slip into some new form of madness, I encourage all of us to take a deep breath, look around, and recognize that the people in our lives, our workplace and our community are NOT the enemy. All of these people are looking to connect back with you in some way after the world threw us a nasty pandemic. And, who knows what the world will throw at us next!
Love you and “Thank You” for being here in our soulful community.