“Kindness in words creates confidence. Kindness in thinking creates profoundness. Kindness in giving creates love.” – Lao Tzu
Whenever I was teased as a child, my mother always taught me to kill my tormentors with kindness. [For the record, I was often teased by the hormone crazed admirer’s of my brother, they once asked me why he was so “hot” and I was, well, just dorky and awkward; needless to say, my mother taught me how to respond to such harshness well — with kindness. ] Someone once said that kindness is one of the most difficult things to give away, as it is usually returned. Kindness replicates itself; it is an evolutionary state, constantly developing and giving both forward and back. It is contagious. Last night, kindness poured out of my mailbox in the thoughtfulness of a letter from friend Laura Summers.
Snail-mail can make someone’s entire day turn around. We live in an age of instant connection, minimal communication effort, and quite frankly, the hand-written letter has become a rarity. Moreover, Laura chose carefully for me — she picked a card that practically screams my name, a new luggage tag with a shoe on it that I would definitely wear, and a Starbucks gift card. What made the mailbox surprise so wonderful was not only the thoughtfulness of it, but also the time that went into making it so personalized for me.
The interesting thing about kindness and thoughtful gestures is that they are usually impeccably timed without our even knowing it. Cards seem to arrive via snail-mail when I most need them, people give me random hugs when I am secretly desperate for some encouragement, and my down days seem to be more sprinkled with kindness by strangers than normal.
Mother Teresa spoke words on kindness that are so powerful and inspirational that they should be a guide to life:
“Spread love everywhere you go: First of all in your own house…let no one ever come to you without leaving better and happier. Be the living expression of God’s kindness; kindess in your face, kindness in your eyes, kindness in your smile, kindness.”
May be all be the kind of people today that allow others to be better and happier after leaving our presence.