Let’s pick up where we left off last month with the screening of Finding Kind. The event was a huge success due to the generosity of Kind Campaign, IndieFlix, Upper Moreland Free Public Library, and, of course, Nourishing Storm. We left that night wanting to throw kindness everywhere. It filled the room and made it bright, like glitter that didn’t stick but just floated around. I encourage you to fill anywhere you are with kindness, too. It feels awesome. In addition, you can actually register to win your own screening by clicking the picture below:
The night of the screening we had several people travel from all over the Tri-State area join us to watch this amazing film about kindness and what sometimes gets in the way of it. We left the screening having learned several lessons. Here are some of them:
1. Kindness is simple.
This probably sounds too good to be true, but if you think about it, kindness really is the easy part. It’s free. It feels good. It works. Quite often social difficulties begin with things like jealousy, shame, disappointment; all things that get in the way of kindness. Once we can clear the clutter of the tough stuff, the kindness comes naturally.
2. Comparison is the thief of joy.
In today’s world, we are often encouraged to compare ourselves to others—in the media, at work, in social circles, in our families even. Protect and expand your own joy by sharing in the successes of others and basking in the simple pleasures of life that we can all share.
3. Forgive yourself and others without shame.
We all make mistakes, and it is easy to allow shame to linger and take hold. Shame only clouds our kindness and gets us stuck in a cycle of unpleasant emotions. We can forgive ourselves for any mistakes we feel we’ve made, and forgive others for their mistakes, big and small. An authentic apology is a very healing thing. Give them and accept them to move toward happiness.
4. Share what inspires you.
Kind Campaign started because two people were inspired to bring kindness to others. Other people teach yoga, practice medicine, create art, harvest food, plant trees, make music. We all have different gifts that are meant to bring goodness into the world. It is never too late to find those gifts, and once you find them, please share them. The world will be a better place for it.
5. We don’t know others’ stories, so err on the side of kindness.
On the outside, it may look like someone has it all, but we never actually know what he or she might be going through. The person that cut you off in traffic might be rushing to an emergency and needs your kindness and understanding more than ever. The person who is dressed a little differently probably feels his or her best in those threads. Who are we to make him or her feel uncomfortable? The person who started a rumor at school or work has likely been hurt before. Know that those actions are fueled by insecurity. Regardless of the scenario, it feels better to let go of any anger or judgement that might accompany an unkind situation, so do yourself and the world a favor, and err on the side of kindness. It helps me to remember these words:
“Be kindest to me when I least deserve it because that’s when I need it the most.”
This will be my last blog post for a while, but I want to thank you for reading this and my previous posts. I hope you have found some goodness in them because that is what I felt writing them. Please continue to find and keep your own goodness. It is always there. Feel free to treat yourself to it. Often.
Tera is a certified school counselor and teaches research courses at Immaculata University. When she is not teaching yoga at Nourishing Storm, you can find her dancing at DAC in Hatboro, creating new goods for her Etsy shop Gracious Sakes, or hanging out at home with her husband and their pets. If you’d like to find ways to get more involved in the community feel free to contact Tera at firstname.lastname@example.org.