Kindness /ˈkʌɪn(d)nəs/ noun: the quality of being friendly, generous, and considerate.
“Words are, in my not-so-humble opinion, our most inexhaustible source of magic.” – JK Rowling
I think kindness very much extends to the way we talk to people because our words have the power to both, inflict pain and remedy it. We remember the way people speak to us, we remember what they say to us and we remember how they make us feel.
I think the person whose words impact me the most is my mum’s. She is able to comfort me when I’m sad, make me laugh when I’m annoyed and even calm me down when I’m angry. She is also able to make me change an outfit when she says she doesn’t like it even if I love it and she also influences my opinion of other people. She taught me to never say “I know” when someone tells me something that I already know. I don’t know if she realises that she does this but when someone is telling her something and she knows about this thing already, she’ll never tell them that she does, she’ll simply listen and agree with them. She is always kind with her words and my mum is the first person my cousins go to when they have a problem because they know she will sort it out for them and make their father (aka her sibling) see their point of view.
I know that I’m not the only child whose mother’s words have the most impact. My friends agree with me, as do my cousins and my mum says that even today her mum’s words have the power to strike a chord. Please be kind to your children. Listen to them. Talk to them about their fears. Tell them that they’re special and beautiful and brilliant and tell them that there’s no one like them in this world. Find out what they feel insecure about, whether it’s their height or their weight or the colour of their skin or the kind of clothes they wear, talk to them about it. Everyone, especially kids, think they have to live up to certain expectations, they think that they have to behave a certain way, be friends with certain people, wear certain clothes, like certain things and entertain certain situations. Make sure your kids know that they only have to be themselves and that being different is okay. You don’t know how much your words matter, I’m telling you that they matter A LOT.
I know that it’s difficult to be kind every single minute of every single day. We’re all human, sometimes we have a bad day and we snap at someone who merely asked a question or we brush off someone mid conversation or we forget who we’re sitting with and we mention something that is sensitive to them. These are mistakes, I think that it is something that we have to give a person leeway for because we’re only human.
I was speaking to someone and I told them that I feel bad when I’m in a bad mood at home and she asked me “why? Your home is the place where you’re allowed to be in a bad mood, you’re allowed to get upset and not want to talk to anyone at home. But what you’re not allowed to do is come to campus in that bad mood or speak to a lecturer in that bad mood or show up to work and deal with a customer in that bad mood.”
I think that the person you need to be most kind to the most is yourself. Only you hear what’s going on inside your head, so you need to make sure that you are a good person to yourself first. I want you to remember this:
You are not your age,
Nor the size of clothes you wear,
You are not a weight,
Or the colour of your hair.
You are not your name,
Or the dimples in your cheeks,
You are all the books you read,
And all the words you speak.
You are your croaky morning voice,
And the smiles you try to hide,
You’re the sweetness in your laughter,
And every tear you’ve cried.
You’re the songs you sing so loudly,
When you know you’re all alone,
You’re the places that you’ve been to,
And the one that you call home.
You’re the things that you believe in,
And the people that you love,
You’re the photos in your bedroom,
And the future you dream of.
You’re made of so much beauty,
But it seems that you forgot,
When you decided that you were defined,
By all the things you’re not.
You need to be kind to your family, your friends, strangers and animals. You need to be kind to everyone. To be kind, is something I have always strived to be and something I will always strive to be.
“Why are you so nice even to people who are rude to you?”
“Because I, too, have been rude to nice people and I know that rudeness comes from a place of a roaring pain. And only kindness soothes it.”
– By The Word