Tuesday, May 08, 2007

A Kinder World

Be kinder than necessary, for everyone you meet is fighting some kind of battle. ~ Anonymous

I'm not sure who wrote this, but it's good. If the world were even 1% kinder ... just think how much better life would be for all of us.

Think about your own life for a second. You know the mind battles you've been through or are currently fighting. The discouragement, the disappointments, the failures you've experienced. We all have them. It's part of the human experience. Combine that with real-life traumas, such as death, divorce, bad health, and financial hardships. Think of how many people in the course of a day whose paths you cross are going through some of the above and you don't know it.

Could you be a bit kinder? Don't you wish someone would've been more considerate toward you?

Life is a series of overwhelming moments. Ever notice that some folk have that same old monkey on their back? That mangy dog they can't run off? What small event needs to take place for life to improve for people like this? A raise in pay, a new pill, a better doctor, or a car that works? Sometimes I think we're products of our environment, but we can change that. We can work towards better health, improved living conditions, a healthier bank account. And yet, as easy as that is for me to say ... I know (from experience) that even when you try ... it just doesn't always happen.

It's easy to pass judgement... "Well, if they would just (fill in the blank.)" Or, "... mind over matter, if they'd just put their minds to it, they could do it!" The power of positive thinking makes me laugh. What is it that makes some feel so superior? I think there must be a combination of thoughts and actions before good things start to happen.

Depressing subject, isn't it? But the good news is this: No matter where we are in life, we must learn one thing - contentment. We may not get to where we want to go as quickly or easily as we think we deserve. But we must be content and find a measure of peace in our circumstances. No, life isn't fair. But happiness comes to those who in the darkest of moments, have learned how to smile. Don't get this confused for setting goals, searching for a better job, or dreaming of a happier tomorrow. All I'm saying is, be content in the moment. Otherwise, you'll find yourself miserable. And you know what "they" say ... misery loves company. We make everybody around us miserable.

So smile. Laugh, even. And be kind in the process.

Now turn it around. Look at ... the guy next to you on the bus, the woman behind you at the grocery, your mail carrier, your stylist, the man who works on your car, on and on .... think of the people you see in just one day while you're out and about. What are their lives like? For the most part, they're like the rest of us ... living day-to-day, hoping for a better tomorrow, wishing we'd lived a healthier yesterday. We need to remember to be kind to one another. And often, they're carrying burdens animals shouldn't bear. Go out of your way to be kind when you suspect this is the case.

In my youth, I had a short fuse. As I grew older, loved and lost, suffered and triumphed, my fuse grew longer. I became a different person. Tolerant, observant, kinder. I'm not perfect, none of us are. If I sound preachy today, I apologize. I'm just feeling that kindness is in short supply these days. We, including myself, need to be reminded.

Try to be kind to the next person who cuts you off in traffic, seems rude and uncaring when he/she delivers your pizza, or checks you in at your doctor appointment and doesn't even look at you. You have no way of knowing what that person is going through. One act of charity could change their world.

And yours too, for that matter.

Blessings to you and yours.

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