Today, I wanted to talk a little about kindness. It's something that we all learn at a young age. You remember when it came to being nice to your sibling(s), sharing with friends, and keeping comments to yourself. My parents wore out these phrases when I was growing up... "If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all." Or "Treat others the way you would like to be treated." and "You catch more bees with honey."
I grew up knowing exactly what it meant to be nice to others. The reason why I'm writing this post, is because lately I've been practicing being kind, and I've seen the effects it has. Recently I've been in different situations where it would be understandable if I got very upset, and forgot all about being kind.
1. My next door neighbors...they haven't been the best or even friendliest neighbors. Their kids are always running around breaking windows (yes our window), or scratching our cars, and our guests cars with balls, bikes, etc. It hasn't been easy. Well along with all that, they're so noisy! I hear them screaming from the top of their lungs at ALL hours (yes, all hours of the day)! Let's get back to being kind.
I was in my office working, and all I could hear were these loud booms, and a kid screaming numbers loudly (veins popping out loudly). It was around #16, that I reached my limit. Granted, I've never really had a conversation with my neighbors, because well...they're not really inviting and they're just annoying. I walked out, and starting walking up their garage to find a bunch of boys around a weight bench. (lol) They were doing weights? (I don't know if that's the proper way to put it)
Surprisingly, I put a smile on my face, and said hi in the friendliest tone possible. I nicely explained that I had been working, and that I was distracted by the noise. I asked nicely if they could keep it down. Just as simple as that. The kids apologized, and I left saying my please and thank you's. I haven't heard a peep since :D
2. Just the other day...Gil (my fiance) and I stopped into KFC because we were hungry and it was late. When we ordered the food, the guy taking our order in the drive thru was not very nice. He was being a jack____ (fill in the blank). I know not to make any fast food worker upset, so we were kind. We asked for fresh chicken, he insisted it was fresh. Upon getting the chicken I noticed it wasn't all that fresh. So we kindly asked again for fresh chicken. The KFC guy again wasn't very nice, and told us it would be a five minute wait.
Well fifteen minutes later, waiting in our car I got upset. I told Gil I was going to go in to get hot sauce. I wanted to make sure to fix this situation before both of us got upset. I waited at the counter for a while before anyone noticed. Finally I got the attention of the same guy that was taking care of us in the drive thru. I thought I was going to rip off his head, but I thought for a second. He must have been having a really bad day. Not every customer is kind like Gil and I. So I cut him some slack, because the look on his face told me I was exactly right.
So I smiled, and asked him for some hot sauce, and asked him about our order. I talked to him like he was a human being, like he was my best friend. He immediately apologized and got to work on it. This guy was so upset at himself, I felt bad for him. He quickly handed me cookies, and my favorite chocolate chip cake as a way to make it up to us. I waited another ten minutes, but I waited with a smile. Rather than throwing a fit, and ruining both of our days, kindness worked best. It again proved to me that it's better to be kind.
3. Here's where I keep it even more real...I've been in disagreement with a certain family member in my life for about two months, but if I'm being honest it's been way longer. When I say a disagreement, I mean we seem to not be on the same page of kindness ever. The _____ hit the fan two months ago, and I got hurt for the umpteenth time. My very first reaction was to get angry and argue but I decided to do the best thing possible for the both of us. I let this family member go. No matter how much I love this person, I love myself more. When someone consistently treats you poorly, they secretly hate themselves for being so negative, even more when you're too nice a person. I felt like the kindest thing to do was let it go, along with any relationship we might have had. It wasn't, and hasn't been easy.
By removing myself from our relationship and their negative actions, I feel like I am doing both of us an act of kindness. Not everyone knows how to be kind, or what it means. Maybe now this certain family member will be happier, at least that's my hope and wish.
Well I hope I proved that being kind is well worth it. I will leave you with these sayings..."You catch more bees with honey." "Treat others the way you'd like to be treated." "If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all."
Do you have a story about how kindness changed a situation for you? I want to hear about it, so don't be shy. Leave me the story in my comments, or my email.