Monday, November 23, 2015

Kindness

 

I have been pretty bummed out by Facebook lately. Have you? I have seen a lot of hate filled posts from people whom I know to be kind and loving. I have seen posts that are totally uninformed, racist, and do not even get me started on the posts about hunting season. Each time I see a post that makes me feel sad or angry my first impulse is to fire off an "educational" response. I hold back. I ask myself if that is kind or helpful...it never is.

I have a person whom I am "friends" with who has inadvertently and unknowingly  become my personal litmus test. Every single post this person makes is aggravating in some form. Eric often tells me I should hide their posts. Instead I seek them out, willing myself to become a kinder person. I let myself feel the initial upset that comes with the post, but then I try to understand. I try to look with kindness at this person. Some days are more successful than others.

Compassion, kindness, empathy---all undervalued in our world. Often I find people looking down on those elements as being simple. I can assure you, as someone who is desperately trying to be kind, that there is nothing easy about the process. From the aggravated comments to outright harassment that color our lives it is a constant struggle. Some days it comes easily, forgiveness and understanding. Other days I tear into my own self and find myself to be sarcastic or rude with others, kindness is not simple. 

What is simple? Passing along hate and uneducated nonsense. I am just trying to keep my head down and be kind.

4 comments:

Roxanne Veinotte said...

I actually un-followed some relatives because of unkind or "spamming" (Lots of likes of this and likes of that, or share this cute puppy doing a dance but not one a day, maybe 10 posts per day EVERY day) But I do stay friends with them, and go look at their page once a while to find the important stuff about their life!
Kindness is also important to do to yourself. Eric is right. If something irritates you to the point of cringing every time you see this person, or see their profile picture on facebook "Oh no, not them again!!!" It is best to be kind to yourself and "unfollow" them because some day you may become resentful, and that's a whole different thing to deal with.

elizabeth said...

yes. a lot of facebook is a bummer lately.
no. there is nothing simple about being kind and gracious.
but yes, being kind and gracious is simply the best. even when biting the insides of ones cheeks to keep from speaking and folding ones hands to keep from typing.

keep on keeping on, maria!
xoxo

Holly said...

The world definitely needs more kindness. This morning on our drive to the bus stop, my daughter commented how the driver next to us looked sad. I asked her what she thought he was sad about and she responded with, "Maybe he doesn't have a home." :( I told her that maybe she should give him a smile when we pass to try and cheer him up.

Most of the time, I sit in traffic, I don't really see the other cars having "people" as the drivers, it's just faceless entities, but this morning, my daughter brought me out of that and showed me a real person, someone who may actually be hurting.

I'm thinking maybe I should adopt a kinder attitude. Maybe this is the time for your Kindness Bandit to challenge all of your readers to a "kindness challenge" for the next month. I think I read somewhere that it takes 30 days to form a new habit, maybe we challenge everyone (again) to do a kindness act at least once a day and see if we can raise up this world a little bit.

Daphne said...

I am with you on this. I have a few people who upset me frequently, even though I know they are good people and I count them as friends. I have hid their posts in the past, but I usually "unhide" them eventually because I feel like I need to walk my own talk: kindness, openmindedness, understanding, and feeling compassion for those I disagree with. It is really, really difficult! But worth doing. As long as one can keep the "educational" replies only inside one's head. Which I am sometimes more successful at than other times... oh well. :)

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