“I have a question” she told me “and I need you to be honest.”
Honesty is something most people know I take very seriously. “Okay, ask away” I replied.
“Am I kind?”
Such a simple yet loaded question. It seriously caught me off guard. I didn’t even know how to really define kind. Is kind and loving the same thing? Is it any different from being caring?
I figured before I answer the question I needed to really understand what kindness is which, according to trusty google, is the quality of being friendly, generous, and considerate.
Well, that didn’t really help because what does it mean to be friendly, to be generous, to be considerate. But the question sure did get my mind racing. Am I nice? Do I go out of my way to help others, am I considerate of others, do I put others before me? The answer is no, not recently and the worst part is I justify all of my actions with dumb excuses.
Being that I work in the customer service field God gives me little opportunities every day to be kind and love others. Most of those opportunities go like this: “Ugh, its him again can you take his order. I just can’t do it anymore.” My reasoning: he just bothers me, he is needy, he talks to me for too long, etc.
I take his order anyway and he strikes up conversation with me. He asks me how my day was, which coffee I prefer, and whats my favorite bakery item. I mumble, nod, and point avoiding eye contact. Doesn’t he understand his presence annoys me, doesn’t he understand I don’t want to talk to him, why the heck is he still speaking to me?
Then it hits me, I am bothered by this person to the point of not wanting to talk to him (which is seriously not okay) because it is like looking into a mirror and seeing myself for what I truly am. I get lonely so I talk to people for too long, I can be needy because I am dependent on others, and I know that there are definitely people I bother. So I guess it is true, the first thing we notice in other people is usually our own flaws.
Every time he comes up my mind begins to race: am I needy, do I talk to other people for too long, is this what people say every time I walk up to a counter somewhere? The answer to this is something that I am still too scared to find out.
Y’all might be like “okay, why have you been rambling about your not so fine moments?”
The answer is because it all goes back to simple question: Am I kind?
This is just one small example of when I was challenged in something that seems so simple. I haven’t yet learned how to be kind to myself and to be kind to others I need to first be kind to myself. I need to be (as google says) generous to my flaws and considerate of my struggles.
Here is the root of my problem, I don’t know how to show myself kindness and you can’t give what you don’t have.
Friends, here is my question. Have you been kind today? Have you been friendly, generous, and considerate of others? And most importantly have you been kind to yourself?